BOOKS & HIEROGLYPHICS
Mayans recorded their lives on paper and stone, and only three Mayan books remain from about 1200 AD. When deciphering their hieroglyphics there are about 1000 different marks representing animals, spirits, humans, nature, and the ways of their daily lives. Almost all of the Mayan characters are either logograms or syllabograms. It took the Mayans time to get used to their own writing because these combinations were very difficult. The writing marks were interpreted in context. For example, the land- and seed- marks both mean cornfield. Hieroglyphic writing is responsible for almost all of the main facts known about the Mayan lowland regions.
Hieroglyphic writing has uncovered many important new facts on some of the ancient Mayan cities. Copan's and Palenque's hieroglyphics are records of those cities' rulers recorded history of many centuries. More hieroglyphic writings and stone carved monuments have been discovered in Copan, which is now situated in present day Honduras, than from anywhere else in the region. The worlds longest written stone was Copan's hieroglyphic staircase which had to be read in fragments because the archeologists assembled the stones in the wrong order.