Skip to main content
Zac Hruby Profile Photo

Dr. Zachary X. Hruby - Adjunct Faculty


Contact Information

  • Office: 248 Landrum
  • Phone: (859) 572-5255
  • FAX: (859) 572-6086
  • Email:

Research & Teaching Interests

Mesoamerican archaeology; ancient lithic technologies; economic anthropology; social theory; epigraphy and iconography; ritual production, exchange, and deposition of lithic goods; comparative Mayan languages; Mayans; Western Native Americans; Pacific Northwest

Current Research

I study the archaeology of both Mesoamerica and North America with specializations in the Maya area (southern Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras) and the American West (California, Nevada, and the Pacific Northwest). Of particular interest to me is Mesoamerican and Maya religion as it is materialized in the archaeological record through ancient Maya texts (epigraphy), art (iconography), and ritual deposits (caches and burials). At the forefront of Maya lithic studies, I have carried out obsidian and flint analysis at some of the most well-known Maya sites over the past twenty years. including Piedras Negras, El Peru-Waka, El Zotz, Holmul, Kaminaljuyu, and Motul de San Jose in Guatemala, Palenque, Pomona, Chunchucmil, and Vista Alegre in Mexico, and Copan and Rio Amarillo in Honduras. My goal is to understand broad economic patterns across the ancient Maya world and through time, as well as how lithic goods (jade, flint, and obsidian) were used in ritual contexts. Most recently I have studied the largest known obsidian cache, a deposit of over 600 obsidian macroblades, from Copan’s Great Plaza. When time permits I also run my own field project on the Caribbean Coast of Guatemala searching for the lost Contact Period city of Nito.

Academic Degrees

  • Ph.D. University of California, Riverside
  • M.A. Brigham Young University
  • B.A. Humboldt State University


  • ANT 100 Cultural Anthropology
  • ANT 110 Unearthing the Past: World Archaeology
  • ANT 245 Peoples of Latin America & the Caribbean
  • ANT 352 Archaeology of Mesoamerica
  • ANT 358 Art and Culture
  • ANT 360 Mesoamerican Indians
  • ANT 386 Economy, Wealth and Culture


  • 2015 Invited Lecture in Japan on the Maya

Selected Publications