Creating “Belize”: The Mapping and Naming History of a Liminal Locale

  title={Creating “Belize”: The Mapping and Naming History of a Liminal Locale},
  author={Matthew Restall},
  journal={Terrae Incognitae},
  pages={35 - 5}
The origins of the settlement in southwest Yucatan that subsequently became the British colony and then nation of Belize, along with the etymology of the toponym Belize, are poorly understood and clouded by colonialist mythology. Using cartographic, archival, and other textual sources, including some in Yucatec Mayan, this article offers a revisionist argument regarding initial British settlement in the region and proposes a new solution to the mystery of the name Belize. 
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123/38; Bolland, Formation
    The Beginning of British Honduras
    • British Honduras: Past and Present
    • 1946
    Naming and History," p. 109) states "some" have suggested a derivation "from balitza
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    selected because they are also in Matthew Restall
    • The Maya World: Yucatec Culture and Society
    • 1997
    109 (who cites a footnote by David Pendergast in Palenque, p. 21, who in turns states that the name likely "derives from the Yucatecan Mayan word belize, meaning 'muddy water
      Examples drawn from documents formerly in the Archivo Notarial del Estado de Yucatán, now in the Archivo General del Estado de Yucatán, Mérida (in volume #s 1812ii
        Thompson's 1972 Maya Hieroglyphs Without Tears; his Maya of Belize, p. 43, states in a footnote that "Beliz [sic] in Yucatec Maya signifies muddy or muddy water
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