maya: Meaning and Definition of


Pronunciation: (mä'yä, -yu), [key]
— n. Hinduism.
  1. the power, as of a god, to produce illusions.
  2. the production of an illusion.
  3. (in Vedantic philosophy) the illusion of the reality of sensory experience and of the experienced qualities and attributes of oneself.
  4. (cap.) Also calleda goddess personifying the power that creates phenomena.


Pronunciation: (mä'yu), [key]
— n., pl. adj. -yas, -ya,
  1. a member of a major pre-Columbian civilization of the Yucatán Peninsula that reached its peak in the 9th centurya.d.and produced magnificent ceremonial cities with pyramids, a sophisticated mathematical and calendar system, hieroglyphic writing, and fine sculpture, painting, and ceramics.
  2. a member of a modern American Indian people of southern Mexico, Guatemala, and parts of Honduras who are the descendants of this ancient civilization.
  3. any of the Mayan languages; the historical and modern languages of the Mayas.
  1. Mayan.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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