J

jade

see greenstone.

jade

ver piedra verde.

(Spanish) political leader.

N/A

jefetura

(Spanish) headquarters, from jefe, "boss, leader."

jefetura

N/A

Jesuitas

Jesuits

members of the Society of Jesus, a Catholic religious order founded in 1533 by Ignatius Loyola; the Jesuits played an important role in the Counter-Reformation. Jesuit missionaries first came to New Spain in 1572; their missionary efforts were concentrated in Mexico City, Puebla, and West Mexico.

jicara

(Spanish) bowl made from dried gourds.

jicara

Julian calendar

a year count introduced by Julius Caesar in 46 B.C., replaced by the Gregorian calendar in A.D. 1582.

K

king-queendom

see yuhuitayu.

kinship

(from Anglo-Saxon cynne, "kin," and scieppan, "to create, make") family relations, based on culturally specific criteria of relatedness (such as biological descent, cohabitation, care and support, the sharing of substance, etc.).

Kirchhoff, Paul

Kukulcan

(from Maya kuk', "quetzal" or "feather," and kan, "serpent") Maya name for the Feathered Serpent god known as Quetzalcoatl in Central Mexico.

Kukulcan

L

la Conquista

labret

(from Latin labium, "lip") Amerindian lip ornament; Mesoamerican labrets typically projected from an incision in the middle of the lower lip.

Ladino

Guatemalan equivalent of mestizo.

Ladino

equivalente guatemalteco de mestizo.

Landa, Diego de

latifundistas

a system of land tenure, and its beneficiaries, dominated by large rural estates (latifundas) granted by the Crown in colonial Latin America and which lasted until the twentieth century. Contrasts with the early sixteenth-century ecomienda system focused on labor control.

latifundistas

Legend of the Suns

Aztec creation myth written in Nahuatl, probably by a Spanish-educated Indian around 1558. Numerous phrases in the text seem to describe or refer to pictures, suggesting that the writing of the alphabetic text was guided by a (now lost) pictorial document.

Leiden Plaque

Precolumbian carved jade belt ornament. One side depicts a standing Maya ruler; the hieroglyphic text on the other side records his seating as ruler of Tikal on September 17, A.D. 320.

Leyenda de los Soles

lime

brittle, white alkaline mineral (CaO) obtained by heating limestone (calcium carbonate, CaCo3). In Mesoamerican cuisine, lime is mixed with water to create a caustic liquid for soaking corn kernels to produce nixtamal.

lime water

see lime and nixtamal.

linaje

lineage

(from Latin linea, "line") a genealogical list of ancestors and their descendants.

lintel

(from Latin lintellus, upper support for a window or door) a horizontal beam (in Precolumbian architecture, usually of stone or wood) that creates the upper frame of a window or door opening.

logico-semantic

linguistic term, also called "logical form," refers to rules that are "context-free phrase structure rules without linear precedence" (Eric Schiller, INTRODUCTION TO AUTOLEXICAL GRAMMAR, published on the Internet by Linguistics Unlimited, Moss Beach CA., 1/22/00). Grammars that generate phrase structures, such as a sentence with a noun phrase and a verb phrase or a verb phrase with a verb plus a noun phrase, are known as phrase stucture grammers. According to Noam Chomsky if the surface structure of language is the phonological component (deletions and filters), the logical form is the semantic component (semantic interpretation rules). "It is assumed that the logico-semantic dimension is universal among human languages, though the framework in no way requires such universality" (Schiller).