The Ancient Maya wore a stone helmet called the Kohaw

The Maya had a war helmet made of pyrite stone called a “Kohaw.”

These unique helmets were only worn by special soldiers such as the Ajaws (or Ahau meaning ‘Lord,’ which usually was a nobility title) and Kaloontes (meaning supreme warrior or military ruler).  An example of these ‘Kohaw’ helmets were found inside a queen’s tomb in the El Perú site, also known as the ‘Wak,’ in northern Guatemala.

Maya. Peten. clay. height 14.8 cm Seated figure with removable helmet. A
Maya. Peten. clay. height 14.8 cm Seated figure with removable helmet. B

The queen’s tomb was uncovered at a site in the ancient Maya city-state of El Perú, which was the capital of the Wak Kingdom. It is believed that the queen’s tomb belonged to none other than Lady K’abel whom was a military ruler of the Wak, or ‘Centipede Kingdom,’ between the years 672 to 692 AD.

Map of the Maya world (Credit: Map courtesy of Keith Eppich )

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written by Njord Kane © 2016 Spangenhelm Publishing

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