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Monkey Business at Northern River Lagoon: A coastal–Inland Interaction Sphere in Northern Belize

  • Shirley Boteler Mock (a1)

Abstract

Ongoing fieldwork at the coastal site of Northern River Lagoon (NRL) in northern Belize, a specialized saltmaking community, has revealed a consumer relationship with the large, inland, stone-tool-producing center of Colha during the Late to Terminal Classic. Artifact distribution suggests that this economic partnership involved the movement of salt, salted products, and trade goods to Colha in exchange for stone tools. This inland–coastal partnership was enhanced by a shared ideology reflected in the iconography of identical Palmar Orange-polychrome plates. The presence of the ideologically imbued plates in both elite and nonelite contexts suggests they were intended to strengthen group allegiance and reinforce territorial boundaries during this troubled time. This study stimulates new insights into the structure of ancient Maya coastal–inland interaction spheres in northern Belize, thereby facilitating comparisons between local areas within a regional context.

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Monkey Business at Northern River Lagoon: A coastal–Inland Interaction Sphere in Northern Belize

  • Shirley Boteler Mock (a1)

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