The Zuyua Than language

While everyone is talking about Joachim Rittstieg, BILD the gold treasure, there is a lot of information that gets jumped over and which I would like to discuss in detail. Unfortunately, BILD is so fast with telling inaccuracies that I’m lacking the time to talk about all of them.

Today however, we want to have a look at another Maya Language related topic, called Zuyua Than.

Zuyua Than, meaning Zuyua language, is mentioned in some of the Chilam Balam books and there is still a great uncertainty as to what it actually was. Zuyua Than is not a real own language spoken by a special tribe or in a special region. It seems to be a language that was spoken by the nobility and priests in some cases, enriched with metaphors, riddles and other poetic techniques. It has many loans from Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs and late Toltecs and may therefore be connected to the Toltec conquering of the Maya tribes. Some of the late Toltecs ruled the Maya in the Post-Classic and formed the tribe of the Itzá. While some pieces about this language are speculation, they fit in the overall view.

Toltec jaguar throne at Chichén Itzá
picture: HJPD/

In the Chilam Balam of Cumayel there is a section called the “Interrogation of the Chiefs” which is a set of questions and answers which are spoken in Zuyua Than, a secret language. It might therefore have been a ritual “language”, which was spoken by rulers and priests. Only the one who could properly answer in the correct Symbols and mythological figures was confirmed as ruler.

Here is a little excerpt of this interrogation, taken from

The language and understanding of Zuyua
for our lord the military governor.
Here on the fourth day of the month of September
in the year 1628,
the unusual Mayan language was composed
so that it appeared written in the heaven lay
known to the men whoever will see it
in the written book of the Language and Understanding of Zuyua.

Zuyua Than yetel Naat
utial c’ yum gobernador mariscal.
Helelae tu canppel kin yuil Septiembre,
tu haabil 1628,
lic yutzcintah u yanal maya than
chicbezahaanil caanal
yoheltoob uinicoob himac yan u uilal
ti u huunil dzibaanil u Zuyua Than yetel Naat.

1:1; Here is the first word which will be asked of them.
They will be asked for his food.
Earnestly will the head chief say to them;
thus will be spoken to the captains:
“Child, bring me the sun in my plate, carry it in your hand.
A lance with a lofty cross is planted
in the middle of its heart.
There is a green jaguar seated on top,
it is bleeding its blood.”

1:1; He ix u yax chun than bin katabac tiobe.
Bin u katabac tiob u hanal.
Ci bin u than halach uinic tiob;
bay bin alabac ti batabobe:
“Mehene, ca a talez ten kin tin plato, ca a lathab ta kab.
Ti cħicaan lanza caanil cruz
tan chumuc u puczikal.
Ti ix culaan yax balam yokol,
u kikic u kikele.”

If you ask yourself, if I have translated some words bad, namely gobernador, Septiembre and cruz, let me tell you, that this is exactly how it’s written in the Chilam Balam of Chumayel. This Chilam Balam was written very late, after the Spaniards arrived, which makes it use Spanish words in the Maya language, like it is today.

Why are we looking at exactly this language?
What does it have to do, with what is going on in Guatemala?

On his website Mr. Rittstieg tells us:

A year later three regional leaders of the natives (= MAYA-priests) trusted in me
for the first time and told me a lot of their history and of their secrets.
They thought I were Kukulcan’s
[sic!] messenger […] During the last sessions we talked together in the “ZUYUA THAN” – language. (That’s the Old-Nordic language, that already exsisted [sic!] when the Spaniards conquered Mexico, and surprisingly it is very similar to my mother tongue “Angeliter Platt”:)

In the German version of this he also mentions, that these Maya priests were in El Salvador. El Salvador is a place, where we would be very surprised to find Zuyua Than. Also it is very surprising, that the priests and Rittstieg himself were able to talk in a language, that is merely describing the usage of metaphors in other languages.

The last point however is the rarest. He compares Zuyua Than with a German-Danish dialect and asserts that Zuyua Than is an Old-Nordic language. He is coincidently the person that can understand Zuyua Than, cause it is similar to the German dialect, which is spoken where he grew up. I don’t even know where to begin to list, how wrong that all is.

Of course Mr. Rittstieg has the possibility to prove everything that he is telling us about Atlantis, the EDDA, Thor being Kukulkan and so on. But what we need for that is evidence, not a fairytale that sounds nice. When we look into the details of what he is telling us, we see that there are serious discrepancies with reality, whether he can see them or not.

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