10 characteristics of MESOAMERICA

Mesoamerica is the name given to a series of prehispanic civilizations, which were located at the time, where the southern half of Mexico is now.

Together with Aridoamerica and Oasisamerica, Mesoamerica is one of the regions into which ancient Mexico was divided, these being considered as cradles of civilization.

pyramid located in mesoamerica mexico

Currently, Mesoamerica is recognized as the international economic region made up of the southern territory of Mexico (9 states) and the countries of Guatemala, El Salvador, Belize, Costa Rica, the western part of Honduras and Nicaragua.

Between the 10 most outstanding characteristics of Mesoamerica ancient, there are:

Characteristics that identify Mesoamerica

  1. Art: The art focused on the elaboration of diverse figures or gods with ceramics, paintings of geometric figures, images of animals, symbols carved on walls, pottery, the so-called colossal heads, among others; all notably influenced by mythology.
  2. Architecture: These civilizations produced many large-scale architectural buildings at that time, such is the case of pyramids, large cities called monumental, palaces, temples, markets, among others. It is said that the pyramids were made as symbols of divine architecture, which is why it seems that they wanted to reach the sky; The higher, the more religious symbology and value they had for their citizens.
  3. Lifestyle: This population maintained a sedentary life, that is, they settled in one place and there they raised animals and sowed their own food, which allowed them to grow and consolidate as a civilization, thus expanding throughout the territory.
  4. Economy: The Mesoamericans practiced planting a lot, especially the cultivation of corn, which was favored by the variety of rivers and lakes in the area to irrigate their plantations, which formed an essential part of their economy and an important part of their diet. Some authors point out that they could also cultivate other items such as beans, rice, squash and others; which allowed them to establish commercial exchanges between the existing groups. However, over the years, they incorporated hunting and fishing into their habits.
  5. Historical periods: Mesoamerica It is divided into 4 periods that are: preclassic period, of which no fixed start date is known and in turn consists of three stages, the early, the middle and the late; he classical period, in which groups begin to form and separate; It in turn has two stages that are the middle and the late. He epiclassic period, marked by battles and territorial struggles, ending with the fall of the Teotihuacanos; and the post classical period, defined by the arrival of the conquerors, thus ending with the priestly commands, which has two stages that are early and late in 1942.

  6. Knowledge: Despite having more empirical than formal knowledge, they were very skilled at mathematics (used during trade), writing using glyphs (symbols with meaning), astrology, and architecture.
  7. Governance: there was a kind of priestly hierarchy, who were the ones who made the decisions and governed the towns; likewise, these were the ones who elaborated and directed the rituals, modified the calendar and established the advances in writing.
  8. Calendar: This was a religious calendar that consisted of 260 days and was initially established by the Olmecs, which later gave way for the Mayans to improve it by adding the 365-day civil calendar, which is maintained to this day. It is important to note that the development of the calendar was not a whim of an amateur group, but the astrological study of the priests and illustrious minds of Mesoamerica at that time.
  9. Religion: the worship of multiple Gods or polytheism It was something common in the various Mesoamerican groups, respect for them marked a solid religion, for which it was common to observe human sacrifices in order to thank or ask their gods for abundance in crops. Many animals were worshiped as gods, especially the snake, which was worshiped for being mysterious, becoming a mythical character. For that reason, the olmecas for example, they worshiped the feathered serpent, finding sculptures of it dating from pre-Hispanic civilizations.
  10. Social Distribution: in this period, the settlers of Mesoamerica They were divided into social groups, based on their culture, race and customs, each of them covering a territorial space.

Consequently, these social groups were established as follows: The Toltecs in the northern zone, the Teotihuacanos in the eastern zone, the Mayas in Oaxaca, the Aztecs in central Mexico, the Olmecs and Mayas in Central America, and the Zapotecs in the gulf of mexico

Finally, these were the 10 characteristics of Mesoamerica most outstanding that we could show you, which speak a lot about the past of the peoples and give reason for their way of life and evolution.

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ENCICLOPEDIA DE CARACTERÍSTICAS (2023) 10 characteristics of MESOAMERICA, en 10caracteristicas.com. https://10caracteristicas.com/en/10-characteristics-of-mesoamerica/ (Consultado el: 22-09-2023)

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