Stela 3

Yaxchilan: Composite showing the eroded River side (right) and better-preserved Temple side (left) of Stela 3 [January 3, 2004]

The stelae at Yaxchilan depict victorious warriors facing all who passed by on the river and images of royal blood sacrifice on the sides facing the hillside temples. Stelae on the Main Plaza all exhibit severely eroded surfaces facing the river and relatively well-preserved surfaces on the temple side, because, as Carolyn Tate explains, "Due to accidents of weather and human judgement, when the stelae on the Main Plaza fell, they all fell toward the hills, with the river sides exposed to rain."

Carolyn E. Tate, Yaxchilan: The Design of a Maya Ceremonial City, p. 100