Skip to Content

Frauke Sachse

Director of Pre-Columbian Studies


Frauke Sachse is Director of Pre-Columbian Studies at Dumbarton Oaks, where she oversees a fellowship program, annual symposium, and lecture series, as well as workshops and colloquia. She also serves as the series editor for the symposium publications and the Dumbarton Oaks Studies in Pre-Columbian Art and Archaeology series.

Formerly assistant professor of Pre-Columbian studies (Altamerikanistik) at the University of Bonn, Sachse earned a PhD in linguistics from Leiden University and an MA in anthropology/Pre-Columbian studies, archaeology, and English from the University of Bonn. Her research interests concern the languages, linguistics, indigenous histories, and religions of Mesoamerica, with a current focus on aspects of translation in the missionary and indigenous text sources from Highland Guatemala. She is contributing to several international translation and editing projects of textual resources in Highland Maya languages. Her research on the written heritage has been supported by fellowships from the Library of Congress (2016–17), Dumbarton Oaks (2012–13), and the Princeton University Library (2007).

She has authored, coauthored, and edited several volumes, including Maya Ethnicity: The Construction of Ethnic Identity from the Preclassic to Modern Times (Saurwein, 2006); Maya Daykeeping: Three Calendars from Highland Guatemala (University of Colorado Press, 2009); Reconstructive Description of Eighteenth-Century Xinka Grammar, 2 vols (LOT, 2010); Diccionario k'iche' de Berlín: El Vocabulario en lengua 4iche otlatecas (Ibero-Amerikanisches Institut/Gebr. Mann Verlag, 2017); and The Myths of the Popol Vuh in Cosmology, Art, and Ritual (University of Colorado Press in press).