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Chapter 6

The Americas

QuestionAnswer
What are Ameriindians? Early sophisticated societies in north and south America, such as the Maya. Lived by hunting and fishing or by food gathering.
What factors prevented the early societies of central and south America from having access to technological and cultural developments taking place in asia, Europe and Africa? The societies on the plateau of central mexico, lowland regions of gulf of mexico and the andes mountains developed in isolation from their counterparts elsewhere in the world. They did not know of the wheel and their written language was rudimentary.
What was the Darwinian concept of evolution? Proposed that the peopling of America had taken place much earlier than following the voyage of Christopher Columbus. The theory proposes that it took place earlier as a result of the migration of small groups across the bering strait at a time when the
Has the Darwinian concept of evolution been confirmed? Yes. Numerous physical similarities between most early americans and contemporary peoples living in northeastern asia have confirmed this.
What is the significance of Cactus Hill in Virginia? This area showed signs of human habitation as long as 15,000 years ago. It is now generally accepted that humans were living in the Americas at least 15,000 years ago.
What were some of the crops of early americans? beans, squash, seeds have been found at sites that date back at least 10,000 years.
Where did corn originate? Archeologists have traced the ancestry of corn back at least 9,000 years to a wild Mexican grass called teosinte.
What was Mesoamerica? The lowland regions near the modern city or Veracruz and in the Yucatan peninsula farther to the east was one of the first civilizations of the Americas that began to appear.
What was Olmec? Where the first signs of civilization appeared in Mesoamerica. It was a culture in the hot, swampy lowlands along the coast of the gulf of mexico south of Veracruz.
What was the Olmec civilization characterized by? Intensive agriculture along the muddy riverbanks and by carving stone ornaments, tools, and monuments at sites such as san Lorenzo.
What were some of the things the Olmec society did? organized widespread trading network, carried on religious rituals, devised a system of un-deciphered hieroglyphics.
How did the Olmec peoples support themselves? by cultivating crops such as corn, beans, fishing and hunting.
What does Olmec mean? "people of the land of rubber" The trees were rubber.
What did the Olmec's trade? Trade was extensive. They traded rubber.
Who were the Zapotecs? Peoples located in Monte Alban near the city of Oaxaca in central mexico. They created an extensive civilization that flourished for several hundred years. They dwelled in terraces cut into sides of mountains. "Sacred mountain" There was an elite class
What was the first metropolis is Mesoamerica? The city Teotihuacan. It was capital of an early state 30 miles northeast of mexico city.
What products were traded in Teotihuacan? cacao, rubber, feathers, vegetables, meat.
What was obsidian? a volcanic glass prized in Mesoamerica for use in tools, mirrors, and blades of sacrificial knives.
Where did the inhabitants of Teotihuacan probably obtain the bulk of their wealth? From agriculture. The combination of fertile soil and adequate soil in the valley of mexico made it one of the richest farming areas in Mesoamerica.
Why did conflict arise between the people of the valley of mexico and the surrounding area? There was fighting over farmland.
What are chinampas? swampy islands crisscrossed by canals that provided water for their crops and easy transportation to local markets for their excess produced.
What were the relations between the early societies in Mesoamerica? Trade contacts were active. olmecs traded rubber for salt and obsidian.
Which was considered the "mother culture"? The Olmec society.
Where were the Maya located? Eat of the valley of mexico and what is now Guatemala and the Yucan peninsula.
What was the popular crop of the mayans? the cacao tree which produced chocolate
Who was Pacal? King of Palenque, one of the most powerful mayan city states. He became king through the blood line of his mother and grandmother.
What was the mayan religion? Polytheistic
what is Itzamna? Lizard House" The supreme God. Viewed as the creator of all things. Thought to have brought the knowledge of maize, cacao, medicine, and writing to the mayan people.
What was the mayan writing based on? hieroglyphs. It was both ideographic and phonetic and became more phonetic as time passed.
What were the mayans known for? Their intense interest in passage of time. The mayan calendar. They also had sophisticated knowledge of astronomy.
What is the "Long Count" a system of calculating time based on a lunar calendar that calls for the end of the current cycle of 5,200 years n the year 2012of the western solar based gregorian calendar.
What was "Mexica"? A group that moved nto the valley of mexico after the fall of the Teotihuacan.
What was "Huitzilopochtli? The Aztecs patron diety.
Were the Aztecs more or less sophisticated than their neighbors? Less sophisticated.They were at first forced to seek alliances with stronger city states. But they were excellent warriors. They had become a dominany city-state in the lake region.
What type of political structure did the Aztecs have? It was authoritarian. Power was vested in the monarch whose authority had both a devine and secular character.
How were aztec rulers chosen? On the death of the ruler, the successor was selected from within the royal family by a small group of senior officials. Once placed on the throne, the ruler was advised by a small council of lords headed by the prime minister.
What are Calpullis? A large kinship group. Consisting of thousands of members, headed by an elected chief who ran its day to day affairs.
What were the Calpullis responsible for? Responsible for providing txes and conscript labor to the state. Maintained its own temples and schools and administered the land held by the community.
Created by: jclicurse