AZTECS

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AZTECS
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AZTECS
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  1. Postclassic years
    950/1050 A.D. to 1519
  2. Characterized by great empires of the Aztecs and Tarascans
    Postclassic
  3. Classic period years
    AD 250 to 600
  4. Characterized by great cities and states, "high point"
    Classic Period
  5. Epiclassic years
    AD 600 to 950/1050
  6. Characterized by the emergence of several regional states after fall of Teotihuacan
    Epiclassic
  7. Formative period years
    2500/2000 BC to AD 250
  8. Characterized by the first settled villages, agriculture, pottery; marked by social complexity, art, and traditions
    Formative period
  9. Years of the Early Formative
    2500-900 BC
  10. Years of the Middle Formative
    900 BC - 300 BC
  11. Years of the Late Formative
    300 BC - AD 250
  12. Important points of the Archaic period
    Nomadic foragers and collectors exploiting specialized resources
  13. Commoner class that made up the vast majority of Aztec populations, worked as farmers and payed tribute
    Macehualtin
  14. Characteristics of "Mesoamerican" culture (4)
    • Reliance on maize, beans, and squash agriculture
    • Stepped pyramids topped with temples
    • Atlatl spear thrower
    • Feathered serpent god (Quetzalcoatl)
  15. 4 area types of Aztec Empire
    • Inner core (unified, Aztec people)
    • Outer provinces (food producers and taxpayers)
    • Strategic provinces (maintained/monitored by military)
    • Tributary provinces (non-Aztec people exploited for a resource)
  16. Aztec ruler, literally "speaker," open to anyone but usually followed family lines
    Tlatoani
  17. Principal Aztec chief of a Calpolli, elected for life
    Calpollec
  18. 9th and last Aztec Tlatoani before the conquest
    Motecuzoma
  19. "Big house" that served as residence for both nobility and some commoners, ~80 of them in Tenochtitlan, specialized labor with elected leader

    *Basic unit of social organization
    Calpolli
  20. Triple alliance ruling the Aztecs at the time of Spanish conquest
    Tenochtitlan, Texcoco, and Tokuba
  21. Important points of Tenochtitlan (5)
    • Ruled on an island, 60,000 houses underneath center of modern Mexico City
    • All built with stone tools
    • Walled center of city separated ritual space from public space
    • Built within ~150 years
    • City-state
  22. Aztec capital city
    Tenochtitlan
  23. Desert Archaic in Guila Naquitz, Oaxaca (3)
    • Earliest known maize in Mesoamerica
    • 4250 BC
    • Earlier than at Tehuacan, but there are even earlier domesticates...
  24. Coxcatlan phase of Tehuacan (3)
    • 5700-3825 BC
    • First domesticates
    • Seasonal nomadic micro/macrobands continue
  25. MacNeish's Tehuacan phases (5)
    • Ajureado
    • El Riego
    • Coxcatlan
    • Abejas
    • Purron
  26. MacNeish's Desert Archaic domestication model (3)
    • Process was very slow, took thousands of years
    • No "Neolithic Revolution" like in the Old World
    • Domestication occurred gradually from cultural processes (i.e. seasonal round)
  27. Major changes in maize (4)
    • Hard cob
    • Multiple rows of kernels
    • Large kernels
    • Soft fruit case on kernels
  28. Artificial selection of cereal grasses often leads to: (3)
    • Larger seeds
    • Non-dispersal of seeds
    • Softer/more edible seeds
  29. Systematic human tampering with evolution of a species leading to a symbiotic relationship
    Domestication
  30. Desert culture of the Archaic (6)
    • Inland mountains
    • Widespread tradition in SW of USA and Mexico
    • Sparse populations in caves and rock shelters
    • Seasonal exploitation of rabbits, seeds, insects
    • Ground plants with milling stone
    • Atlatl and crude choppers
  31. How did the climatic changes during the Archaic period affect human activity? (4)
    • Better hunter-gatherers
    • "Seasonal rounds"--small groups in dry season, larger in wet
    • Improvements in plant cultivation
    • 2 adaptations: Wetland Archaic and Desert Archaic
  32. Years of the Paleoindian period
    13,500 - 8,000 BC
  33. Points of evidence for Asian origins of American inhabitants (5)
    • Nuclear DNA
    • mtDNA
    • Linguistic data suggests at least 3 migration episodes
    • Tooth morphology
    • Biology and cultural ties--debatable
  34. Important points of Paleoindian period (2)
    • Nomadic Pleistocene hunter-gatherers
    • Uniform (similar) culture
  35. Mexico Paleoindian sites (4)
    • Santa Iztapan/Tepexpan
    • Valsequillo region
    • Tequixquiac
    • Tehuacan Valley, Puebla
  36. Important points of Santa Iztapan (4)
    • Mammoth kill-site north of Mexico City
    • Tepexpan "Man" (really woman) skull
    • Dated 9000 - 7000 BC
    • Projectile points, but after Clovis
    • (Mexico Paleoindian site)
  37. Important points of Valsequillo region sites (5)
    • 5 sites with crude stone tools and Pleistocene fauna
    • Dating problematic, no clear archaeological context
    • Most crude choppers, look "Pre-Clovis"
    • Remains of extinct megafauna
    • (Mexico Paleoindian sites)
  38. Important points of Tehuacan Valley, Puebla (6)
    • Seasonal camps of nomadic families
    • Hunted antelope, horses, jackrabbits
    • Ajureado Phase
    • Lots of smaller tools
    • No grindstone tools for preparing plants
    • 4-8 people in groups, moved 3 times a year
    • (Mexico Paleoindian sites)
  39. Important points of Tequixquiac (4)
    • Earliest art, some stone tools
    • No date, but Pleistocene animal remains
    • Carved coyote/dog made out of sacrum of extinct camelid
    • --Not sure when it was made
    • (Mexico Paleoindian site)
  40. Paleoindian Mexico sites conclusions (6)
    • Not many sites compated to North or South America
    • Poorly dated
    • At least 1 Clovis point, but other points are better represented
    • Broader tool variety, first portable art
    • Possibly more diverse culture than North America with less hunting of megafauna
    • Perhaps beginning of regional tradition
  41. Problems with Paleoindian period sites (2)
    • Few artifacts, no hearths, crude or few stone tools
    • Dating problematic, artifacts problematic
  42. Summary of Paleoindian Period (4)
    • Earliest well-dated sites in Mexico about 9000-7000 BC, post-Clovis
    • Paleoindian 12,800-8000 BC
    • Hunted megafauna, but also smaller game and collected plants
    • Native Americans related to North Asians, came by crossing Beringia during Pleistocene Ice Age
  43. Years of Archaic Period
    8000 to 2500/2000 BC
  44. Metate
    Milling stone
  45. El Riego Phase of Tehuacan Valley (4)
    • 8650 - 5700 BC
    • Plants increasingly important during wet season
    • Hunting of small animals in dry season
    • Seasonal nomadic microband/macroband
  46. Abejas Phase of Tehuacan Valley (5)
    • 3825-2600 BC
    • Mostly campsites, but first pit houses suggest semi-sedentism along rivers
    • Steadily decreasing reliance on wild foods
    • Stone bowls and jars
    • Growing of maize, collection/roasting of agave
  47. Ajuereado Phase of Tehuacan Valley (4)
    • >10,000 BP - 8650 BC
    • Microband hunters and foragers
    • No specialized tools for plant consumption
    • Paleoindian
  48. Purron Phase of Tehuacan Valley
    • 2600-1600 BC
    • Transition to sedentary villagers and more complex society
    • Domesticated plants made up 35% of their diet
    • Earliest pottery called Purron at beginning of phase imitates earlier stone vessels
    • Very few sites, not well understood
  49. Wetland Archaic (5)
    • Basin of Mexico
    • Rich wetland environment allowed sedentary life (collecting rather than foraging) by 6000 BC
    • People were "pre-adapted" to agriculture, so transition may have been much quicker than in Desert Archaic (may have been sedentism BEFORE agriculture)
    • First fired clay figurine
    • First domesticated corn here probably introduced after it became adapted to colder conditions
  50. Important points of the Early Formative
    • 2500/2000 to 900 BC
    • First settled villages
    • Simple agricultural economies
    • Ceramic production
    • Beginnings of social complexity
    • Emegerence of regional art traditions (esp. Olmec)
  51. Tlatilco (5)
    • Early Formative site in the Basin of Mexico
    • Best known for its 500 burials
    • Famous for female clay figurines used in domestic rituals
    • 2 styles of grave goods: West Mexican and Olmec
    • Burials typically only have one style of pottery, may have been different moieties, or different genders
  52. West Mexican pottery style (2)
    • Found at Tlatilco in graves
    • Dark brown and black pottery often showing animals and/or dual figures, esp. life/death
  53. Olmec pottery style (3)
    • Found in graves at Tlatilco
    • Related to the Gulf Coast
    • Often elegant white or gray vessels with typical Olmec motifs such as dragon, were-jaguar baby, acrobats and baby-face figurines
  54. Openo Culture (3)
    • West Mexico, 1500(?) to 900 BC
    • All we know comes from graves, no house sites
    • Built "shaft" tombs, which lasted in W. Mexico for 2500 years
  55. Four major sites of the Olman Heartland
    • San Lorenzo
    • La Venta
    • Tres Zapotes
    • Valley of Oaxaca
  56. San Lorenzo (4)
    • 1250-900 BC
    • First great Olmec center
    • Had several unique stone heads
    • Had Olmec thrones (altars)
  57. Phases of San Lorenzo, according to Coe (4)
    • Ojochi Phase
    • Bajio Phase
    • Chicharras Phase
    • San Lorenzo Phase
  58. San Lorenzo Phase of San Lorenzo (Coe) (6)
    • 1150-900 BC
    • Apogee of site
    • Olmec heads and other monuments were carved
    • Hydraulic projects must have required highly organized labor
    • Imported many "mirror stones" for shamanistic purposes
    • Maize used to make beer for feasts
  59. Olmec heads @ San Lorenzo (4)
    • Each is unire, different headdresses
    • Probably portraits of rulers, could be posthumous
    • Some may have been recarved from thrones
    • Nearly all were found deliberately mutilated
  60. Possible reasons why Olmec heads were mutilated (4)
    • Destruction by invaders
    • Peasants' revolt
    • Release of magic power
    • Ritual "termination" of the site upon its abandonment
  61. El Manati (5)
    • 1500-900 BC
    • Swamp with a natural water spring that comes out of it
    • Anaerobic muddy context has preserved a lot of the culture
    • Wooden figures, greenstone axes, carved stone "footprint", rubber balls
    • Bones of children found at the opening, probably sacrificed to bring rains
  62. Time/place of the bulk of Olmec occupation
    La Venta during the Early Formative
  63. La Venta
    • Great MF Olmec site, c. 900-500 BC
    • First Olmec architecture, including pyramids
    • Many great architectural offerings, mosaics; public contexts
    • Appearance of Olmec jades, many found far away indicating trade
    • Many sculptures, figurines, colossal heads, thrones, ruler portraits
    • First carved stelae, first writing in Mesoamerica
  64. Tres Zapotes (6)
    • Olmec site, 900 BC to AD 250
    • Wasn't a big site until Late Formative
    • Much of the architecture dates to post-Olmec Classic Period
    • Site was very spread out, possibly made of distinct groups, not unified
    • Colossal heads smaller than at other sites
    • Traces of writing in stelae, same calendar used as the Maya
  65. Chalcatzingo (3)
    • Site at Morelos, 900-500 BC
    • A Middle Formative site with Olmec-style low-relief carvings
    • Series of rituals performed around mountains, literal cave emergence of ruler to bring the rains
  66. Teopantecuanitlan (3)
    • Site in Guerrero, 900-500 BC
    • 10 monuments, one with date of 10 Flower, perhaps oldest hieroglyphic writing and evidence of Mesoamerican calendar
    • Very early possible ballcourt, adobe sweatbath for ritual cleansing
  67. Juxtlahuaca (3)
    • Site in Guererro, 900-500 BC
    • Cave site with paintings, Olmec style
    • Depicts ruler with prisoner
  68. Oxtotitlan (3)
    • Site in Guererro, 900-500 BC
    • A cave site with Olmec-style paintings
    • Shows large olmec throne with seated ruler wearing a mask, king impersonating a god to legitimize rulership
  69. Valley of Oaxaca's Chronology of San Jose Mogote and Monte Alban (6 phases)
    • Espiridion Phase
    • Tierras Largas Phase
    • San Jose Phase
    • Guadalupe Phase
    • Rosario Phase
    • Monte Alban Phase
  70. Epsiridion Phase in the Valley of Oaxaca (5)
    • 1900-1400 BC, Early Formative
    • Full sedentism/agriculture
    • No site hierarchy
    • Small wattle-and-daub houses
    • First pottery
  71. Tierras Largas Phase in the Valley of Oaxaca (5)
    • 1400-1150 BC, Early Formative
    • First public architecture, probably a "Men's House," at San Jose Mogote
    • Still egalitarian society
    • Valley of Etla was the most densely occupied
    • Whole Oaxaca area had less than 500-600 people
  72. San Jose Phase in the Valley of Oaxaca (6)
    • 1150 - 850 BC, Early Formative
    • Emergence of chiefdom, specialization, and war
    • Contact with Olman (contemporaneous with San Lorenzo and Tlatilco)
    • San Jose Mogote grew to 10x size of other Etla Valley villages, 600 people
    • Household autonomy diminished as chiefdom developed
    • Evidence of social stratification, craft specialization, and pooling/redistribution of imported goods
  73. San Jose Mogote during San Jose Phase (6)
    • Division of labor seen in activity areas within houses, but assumptions are problematic
    • Trade evidence in exported gray pottery found in Basin of Mexico and San Lorenzo, mirrors from mirror stones Imported pottery, ritual paraphernalia (stingray spines, shark teeth, turtle shell drums, conchshell trumpets)
    • Warfare evidence in palisade posts directly dated to 3000 ya
    • Burials show social differentiation in grave goods
    • Emergence of Zapotec Lightning and Earth motifs
  74. Guadalupe Phase in the Valley of Oaxaca (4)
    • 850-700 BC, Middle Formative
    • Growth of San Jose Mogote into a large complex chiefdom
    • End of trade with Olman, no interaction with La Venta
    • Continued growth of complexity of San Jose Mogote
  75. Rosario Phase in Valley of Oaxaca (6)
    • 700-500 BC, Middle Formative
    • First monumental art, writing, calendar
    • San Jose Mogote reaches 15x size of the next village
    • Continuing warfare with other chiefdoms in VOO
    • Buffer zone between SJM chiefdom and other areas
    • Great differences in wealth, "maximal chiefdom"
  76. Monte Alban I in Valley of Oaxaca (9)
    • 500-150.100 BC, Late Formative
    • Founding of paramount capital at Monte Alban
    • Birth of state and city, unified under single polity
    • 3 large populations in the VOO arms, SJM abandoned in 500 BC and Monta Alban grew huge
    • By 200 BC, had >17000 people, defensive walls
    • First and largest urban center in Mesoamerica
    • Agricultural intensification, irrigation
    • Pottery manufacture
    • Zapotecs begin to expand out of VOO and annex other territories
  77. Theories of settlement in Monte Alban, despite its lack of water and farmland (3)
    • Cooperation: founded as 7 distinct chiefdoms merged
    • Defensive strategy: SJM and Etla groups abandon there and join together in more defensive location
    • Offensive strategy/Conquest: Perhaps Etla people set out to conquer/control region from Monte Alban
  78. Monte Alban II (Evidence for a Zapotec State) (6)
    • 150/100 BC to AD 100
    • Centralized government in the hands of non-kin-based ruling class
    • Ability to wage war, draft soldiers, levy taxes, collect tribute
    • Public works by professionals, including religious structures
    • 4-tiered administrative hierarchy
    • Zapotec capital of Monte Alban is largest city in S. Mexico until collapse in AD 700
  79. Cuicuilco (6)
    • An advanced chiefdom or early state in the Basin of Mexico
    • Founded in the Early Preclassic
    • Had W. Mexican ceramics
    • Was the Basin's first monumental center (i.e. Round Pyramid)
    • Reached its height c. 400-200 BC, but destroyed by eruption of Xitle Volcano
    • Old Fire God was principal deity
  80. Chupicuaro (4)
    • Only have looted collections
    • Sites located on the banks of Lerma River
    • Pottery is related to materials of Cuicuilco, possible that Chupicuaro people were settlers from Basin of Mexico/Cuicuilco, who may have left when climate allowed expansion
    • Also possible that pottery of Chupicuaro was introduced from/local to the Basin
  81. Shaft-Tomb Complex (4)
    • May have begun as early as 1500 BC
    • Ever increasingly rich tombs
    • Some pottery or goods from Teotihuacan, so continues to a somewhat later time, c. 100 BC - AD 300 or later
    • Lots of grave goods, imports indicate complexity and connectivity within and between groups
  82. Possible push/pull factors for the expansion of Teotihuacan (3)
    • Push factor--people left southern half of basin because of volcanic eruptions
    • Pull factor--people were attracted to Teo because it emerged as a vibrant religious center
    • Pull factor--Teo expanded militarily and forced people to move
  83. Patlachique phase of Teotihuacan (4)
    • 150 BC-AD 1
    • Contemporary with late Cuicuilco; population of 20,000; covered 8 km sq. and concentrated in north
    • Rural in character, no great buildings; no known elite houses or burials
    • Most structures destroyed by later building projects (except “old city”)
  84. Tzacualli Phase of Teotihuacan (5)
    • (AD 1 - 150)
    • Massive population influx to 60-80 k
    • Construction of Pyramid of the Sun and initial stages of Moon
    • Important palaces also built
    • Sloping-wall (talud) architecture
  85. Miccaotli Phase of Teotihuacan (5)
    • (AD 150-200)
    • City reaches max population of 100-200 k
    • Ciudadela & Feathered Serpent Pyramid built
    • Human sacrifice on a large scale
    • Change of religious focus?
  86. Tlamimilolpa Phase at Teotihuacan (5)
    • (AD 200-350)
    • Old residences destroyed
    • More than 2000 apartment complexes built (including Tetitla and Oaxaca Barrio)
    • Slope-tablet (talud-tablero) architecture introduced
    • Continued growth of Ciudadela until AD 250 when it is terminated; shift in rulership? Avenue of the Dead Complex replaces it
  87. Xolalpan Phase of Teotihuacan (5)
    • AD 350-550
    • Maximum interaction with distant regions in early Xolalpan times (great trade networks), followed by slow decay of Teo’s power
    • Peak of ethnic barrios at beginning of period
    • Some new apartment compounds (Atetelco, Tepantitla)
    • Avenue of the Dead Complex increasingly important
  88. Metepec Phase of Teotihuacan (6)
    • AD 550-650?
    • End of Classic Teo
    • No major construction
    • Deliberate burning of city during this period, perhaps early
    • Not sure why it collapsed
    • Population levels dropped to about 40,000
  89. Pyramid of the Sun (5)
    • Talud-tablero construction on the later/front elements, tied to gods and goddesses
    • No burials, used purely for religious purposes
    • Series of tunnels and caves underneath with 7 side chambers that may represent caves in the Aztec creation myth
    • Oriented to reflect the rising and setting of the sun according to the creation day and calendar year
    • Built in one stage
  90. Pyramid of the Moon (2)
    • More complex than POS, was added to several times
    • Lots of burials with elite sacrifices covered in jade
  91. Feathered Serpent Pyramid (5)
    • Covered with sculpture, ie swimming snake with headdress tail
    • May have been related to later Quetzalcoatl
    • Series of massive burials of warriors with ornate necklaces of teeth and maxilla coming from all over the place
    • Possible calendrical ties in # of burials, possible warfare god temple
    • Was sealed off and covered up
  92. Street of the Dead Complex (4)
    • A later major palace
    • New apartment complexes built ~200-300 AD, stayed there for a long time
    • May have been institutionalized by Teo for craft specialization
    • Built in several different stages, was continuously altered
  93. Stratification of apartment compounds at Teotihuacan were based on several factors (3)
    • Wealth
    • Profession
    • Ethnicity
  94. Clues that Tlailotlacan was a Oaxaca Barrio of Zapotec culture (7)
    • Oaxaca-style pottery for everyday purposes
    • Pottery was not imported, locally made
    • Pottery was outdated by Oaxaca's standards
    • Burials were Zapotec style
    • Ancestor worship was very Zapotec
    • Stela with Zapotec name
    • Zapotec urn

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