This text brings to life the extraordinary civilization of the Maya. In it, the author answers questions about why they constructed their cities in the hostile setting of the jungle, the exact age of their ruins, the strange human images depicted in elaborate costume at so many of their sites and asks why, at the time of the Spanish conquest, all knowledge of the Maya had been lost. The book examines the Maya's history, art, architecture, political systems and religion and, finding that the Maya are not in fact a lost people due to their modern descendants in Mexico, considers the ways in which their society today illuminates that of their ancestors.
David Drew is an archaeologist who has worked in Latin America for more than twenty years. He has also written and presented many television documentaries for BBC series such as Chronicle and Timewatch. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and the Royal Anthropological Institute.