The Maya Temple-Palace of Santa Rosa Xtampak, Mexico 
von Hasso Hohmann | ISBN: 978-3-901519-44-4

The book presents the results of an Austrian research project lasting several years. It documents and reconstructs the 1300-years-old remains of the approximately 17 m high, 50 m long and 30 m wide three-floor Maya temple-palace in the rain forest of the Mexican state of Campeche. This temple-palace is an amazing combination of sacral and profane architecture. It has close to 50 rooms, two stair-cases, four low stairways to the base platforms of the temple-palace, 14 extremely steep unusable pseudo stairways and a 60° steep stairway with steps which are 37 cm in height running from the base platform up to the third floor to a huge monster mouth passageway.

Plenty of questions on this Maya temple-palace are discussed. Many details are compared with similar structures at other Maya sites from the point of view of an engineer. Reconstructions by inductive solution are visualized by broken lines, hypothetically added ones by dotted lines. The analysis focusses on form, construction and function.

The form shows a combination of temple-pyramids and plenty of stone houses featuring different characteristics. These seem to stand on an artificial terraced hill between the temple-pyramids.

The massive construction consists of stone walls and corbelled vaults with stone surfaces and a reinforced hardened lime mortar core – in some cases reinforced above lintels. Some construction principles, quite unknown and rare, are discussed. There are, for example, clear indications of the intention of the ancient planners to build a roof comb, which is drawn by dotted lines, on top of the temple-palace but there are also obvious static reasons why the roof comb was not executed. This structure also shows that vault beams did not have a static function but rather a practical one.

The publication provides several clear indications for different functions of the huge structure. Even the positioning of the lower vault beams within the corbelled vaults is a quite clear indication of the function and in some cases also of the use of certain accommodation.

Hasso Hohmann’s publication “The Maya Temple-Palace of Santa Rosa Xtampak, Mexico” consists of a hardcover book and a wing wallet for 13 plans. The book measures 27 x 36 cm, has 152 pages, is cloth bound, hardcover, cellophane wrapped; weight 1.5 kg. It contains 2 maps, 37 historic plans, 99 unpublished new plans, 60 photographs in black and white as well as 10 in color, 3 diagrams, a glossary and a bibliography.

The wing wallet for plans has almost the same format, contains 13 folded sheets measuring 72.5 x 101 cm for the large-size front views, plans and sections; weight 1.3 kg.

The set including packing material weighs 3.1 kg. Number of copies 150.

The book and the plans were published in 2017 by the “Verlag der Technischen Universität Graz”, ISBN 978-3-85125-457-0 and by “Academic Publishers Graz”, ISBN 978-3-901519-44-4.

The price of the set is 75 € + postage.

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