### More Mayan Musings ...

From: Elron Steele Date: Fri Nov 25, 2005 10:18 amSubject: more Mayan musings ... | elron6900 Send IM Send Email |

The Tolzkin was a twisted bit of calendar logic and record keeping though, lol. Essentially, they didn't have a concept of a month in the Tolzkin ... instead, they merged a 13 day week with a 20 day week, lol.

While our calendar uses a single week of seven days, the Mayan calendar used two different lengths of week:

- a numbered week of 13 days, in which the days were numbered from 1 to 13
- a named week of 20 days, in which the names of the days were:

0. Ahau | 1. Imix | 2. Ik | 3. Akbal | 4. Kan |

5. Chicchan | 6. Cimi | 7. Manik | 8. Lamat | 9. Muluc |

10. Oc | 11. Chuen | 12. Eb | 13. Ben | 14. Ix |

15. Men | 16. Cib | 17. Caban | 18. Etznab | 19. Caunac |

That's from the page I posted earlier, and gives the names for days of the 20 day week. Keeping track of the day here is bizzarely complex though. Here's a table that shows the 13/20 day sequence for about 60 days ... would seriously do my head in to have to keep track of this, lol ...

20-day | 13-day | 20-day | 13-day | 20-day | 13-day | ||

Ahau | 1 | Ahau | 8 | Ahau | 2 | ||

Imix | 2 | Imix | 9 | Imix | 3 | ||

Ik | 3 | Ik | 10 | Ik | 4 | ||

Akbal | 4 | Akbal | 11 | Akbal | 5 | ||

Kan | 5 | Kan | 12 | Kan | 6 | ||

Chicchan | 6 | Chicchan | 13 | Chicchan | 7 | ||

Cimi | 7 | Cimi | 1 | Cimi | 8 | ||

Manik | 8 | Manik | 2 | Manik | 9 | ||

Lamat | 9 | Lamat | 3 | Lamat | 10 | ||

Muluc | 10 | Muluc | 4 | Muluc | 11 | ||

Oc | 11 | Oc | 5 | Oc | 12 | ||

Chuen | 12 | Chuen | 6 | Chuen | 13 | ||

Eb | 13 | Eb | 7 | Eb | 1 | ||

Ben | 1 | Ben | 8 | Ben | 2 | ||

Ix | 2 | Ix | 9 | Ix | 3 | ||

Men | 3 | Men | 10 | Men | 4 | ||

Cib | 4 | Cib | 11 | Cib | 5 | ||

Caban | 5 | Caban | 12 | Caban | 6 | ||

Etznab | 6 | Etznab | 13 | Etznab | 7 | ||

Caunac | 7 | Caunac | 1 | Caunac | 8 |

Wow ... I sometimes have trouble reconciling a 7 day week with 28, 30, or 31 day months ... that would mess with my head, lol.

From: Elron Steele Date: Fri Nov 25, 2005 10:28 amSubject: Re: more Mayan musings ... | elron6900 Send IM Send Email |

Apparently, Mayans didn't. From what we can see, it looks as though Mayans counted in a base 20 system, but they seemed to be comfortable with several different numbering bases, including 18 and 13. So a calender that has 18 months of 20 days may seem complex when we think of it in base 10 terms, but if we THOUGHT in base 20 and base 18 as a matter of course, it probably wouldn't seem nearly so complex.

But that raises another issue, IMO. Thinking in numbering systems other than base 10 is another fairly recent western invention. Certainly, the general public still finds anything but base 10 mystifying. In computer science, we need to lear about binary (base 2), octal (8) and hexideciamal (16) numbering systems and how to do math in them, and while there are lots of people who can do it today, VERY few people THINK in those bases in the way they think in base 10. And yet, it seems from the records, that 2500 years ago, average people were counting days and time, among other things, rountinely using base 20, base 18, base 13, and freely working with each system. Thats remarkable to me in a very profound way, IMO.

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