The stucco sculpture, which is 10 feet wide and 11.5 feet tall, was buried for centuries at the Chilonche ruins, close to the border with Belize.
The recent discovery of the head, which dates from the early Classic period between 300 to 600 AD, means the site is much older than previously thought. The Maya often constructed new buildings using older ones as foundations.
“It could be an imaginary being, something from the underworld, perhaps linked to a Mayan deity,” Polytechnic University of Valencia professor Gaspar Munoz, part of the team of archeologists that found the head, told Reuters.
Unlike Guatemala’s famous Mayan cities of Tikal and El Mirador, little excavation has been carried out at Chilonche.