Mayan vase

Mayan vase

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Credit: PASQUALE SORRENTINO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Mayan vase. This vase, decorated with a Mayan face, was found at the Palace of Taj Chan Ahk in Cancuen. Cancuen was a major trade city that was at its peak during the 7th century AD. The city, located in Pasion, El Peten, Guatemala, specialised in trading jade, pyrite and obsidian. Its strategic position on the Pasion River helped it dominate trade in the region. Taj Chan Ahk, one of the city's most powerful rulers, built his huge palace in 770 AD.

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