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Lamanai, Belize – Administrative & Elite Residential Area, Ottawa
5th Stop, Open Courtyard, Numerous structures

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Although there is a fair amount of variability in Maya architecture, especially regional and temporal differences, there still are numerous similarities.  For instance due to building restrictions rooms found in residential areas are very narrow, vaulting of limestone placed on the upper portions needed thick walls to be supported and the result was a narrow space within.

Narrow rooms depicted in the lower left – cross section of a Maya corbelled vault also visible (illustration by L. Belanger,  

Structure N10-15 - Lamanai, Belize

Recent consolidation work on rooms and benches in the residential area – a large percentage of rooms contain benches that we believe either served as sleeping areas or were for administrative uses


Upper Stucco Façade, Structure N10-28, Lamanai, Belize

Detailed upper façade stucco from Structure N10-28 also seen in M. Shelby's work - N10-28 or Tulip is the second structure from the right (image above) with the upper façade decorations illustrated – the majority of the stucco was located in the courtyard directly in front of the building, and was recovered by D. Pendergast, C. Belanger, and M. Shelby – this elaborately decorated building surely housed some of Lamanai's most important individuals  

Structure N10-15, Lamanai Residential Area

Central stair leads to upper buildings and rooms, unlike N10-77 found by Graham to have rooms that open right into the courtyard – by definition a courtyard generally restricts access to an area and this architectural element provides us with valuable information that archaeologically is often lost  


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