SECRET OF THE FOREST: On the Track of Maya Temples by Wolfgang Cordan

SECRET OF THE FOREST: On the Track of Maya Temples

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Pre-history becomes history as quiet rebels dig into the Central American jungles seeking artifacts of human time--the archaeologists at work on the mystery of the ancient Mayan civilizations. Adventure, certainly, at the machete-holding hands of local vandalism, gringo avarice, and jungle powers; yet this peaceable narrative of life and expedition among the indios, vestigial organs of an archaic race, makes its points unobtrusively--the author's interest carries the case. Background of earlier investigations, current Indian scenes in Yucatan, coastal Mexico, Guatemala, set the rules for the hunt after unrecorded time--the possible proof that the Mayan calendar zero date may actually lie as far back as 3373 B.C.. A Mayan scholar, here the author finds a new fascination in a Pre-Mayan culture--the Olmecs, whose statuary ures the witless Acapulco tourist where pesos count more than antiquity, leaving the threads of Olmec high culture yet to be unravelled. In a straightforward style, well translated from the German, a true temple-digger's concern for the origins of history comes across. Even the layman can get excited over soul-birds, sungods, and pre-Columbian invasions. The human side back of Carbon-14 and dried up museum exegeses.

Pub Date: Feb. 7th, 1963
Publisher: Doubleday