Quirigua: Monument 10

Quirigua: Stela J [January 8, 2004]

"Columnar stela rising to a height of 5 m [15 feet] above the ground. On the west side is the sculpted frontal figure of Cauac Sky. Like the other well-preserved early portrait of this ruler on Monument 8, he is shown without a beard. He stands on an earth-monster mask, similar to the pedestal on Monument 8, holding the manikin scepter in his right hand and a small round shield in his left. The headdress appears intermediate between the more simple form seen in Monument 8 and the elaborate compositions of Cauac Sky's later stelae.

The other three sides of Monument 10 are covered by hieroglyphic texts. The back [east] side has four columns. The Initial Series date is on the back, opening with an unusually large introductory glyph and recording the dedicatory date of 9.16.5.0.0 using head-variant numerals. This is the earliest known use of this numerical notation form at Quirigua. At C11 [third row from the bottom, second from the right], there is a reference to 14 hel, indicating that Cauac Sky was the 14th member of the local dynastic succession. The northern text records a distance number that counts back from the Initial Series date to fix Cauac Sky's inauguration on 9.14.13.4.17 12 Caban 5 Kayab. The sacrifice of 18 Rabbit, ruler of Copan, is recalled in the southern text with another distance number recording the date 9.15.6.14.6 6 Cimi 4 Tzec [738 A.D.]."

Robert J. Sharer, Quirigua: A Classic Maya Center & Its Sculptures, Carolina Academic Press, 1990, p. 49