Mayan Calendar : Wheels Within Wheels

To measure time accurately including periods of thousands and even millions of years the ancient Mayas used a series of several cycles or calendars like wheels within wheels.

The current Long Count, a cycle of 13 Baktuns (about 5,125 years), leads to the Winter Solstice end date of 21st December 2012. With the 3 main cycles, this date can be written as below :

The sacred Tzolkin Mayan Calendar, a cycle of 260 days, is the core wheel which is still traditionally used in daykeeping, astrology, divination and ceremonies. It is itself composed of 2 wheels of 13 numbers and 20 solar signs making 260 combinations, as below.

21st December 2012

21st December 2012

The representation in the Madrid codex shows the 20 cycles of 13 dots or days with their starting solar sign glyphs, radiating out from the centre in the ‘Flower of the Tzolkin Calendar’.

Flower of the Tzolkin Mayan Calendar - Madrid Codex

Flower of the Tzolkin Mayan Calendar - Madrid Codex

Alternatively here is the Tzolkin as 2 wheels :
Left Wheel : The 13 Numbers in dot bar notation Right Wheel : The 20 Solar Signs

A dot = 1 and a bar = 5

The Tzolkin Mayan Calendar as 2 wheels of 13 x 20

The Tzolkin Mayan Calendar as 2 wheels of 13 x 20

Click here to consult our Mayan Calendar Books

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