Early Civilizations in the Americas by PrivateLabelArticles

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									Early Civilizations in the Americas

Outline
American Indians
North American Indians Indians of the Plains Pueblo Indians

Central and South American Indians
Mayas Toltecs Aztecs Tiahuanacos Incas

American Indians
Man appeared in the W. Hemisphere 1025,000 y.a. Physical appearance: Chinese These people developed their own culture independent of other people.
Different and distant people, in the same stage of development and faced with the same problems, often developed the same ideas and solutions in meeting these problems.

7,000 B.C. – planting crops were discovered.

North American Indians
Eskimos
Lived on hunting and fishing No semblance of central government

North Pacific Coast Indians
Totem poles – wooden poles with carved figures of animals whose spirits were considered special by the family

Iroquois
Stayed in wigwams League of the Iroquois (The Five Nations)
First semblance of (con)federation

Indians of the Plains
E.g. Sioux, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Kansa Became buffalo hunters with the introduction of horses to America

Pueblo Indians
Lived in Southwestern United States Had a council of elders to advise the chief Maintained a reserve supply of food

Central and South American Indians
Mayas Toltecs Aztecs Tiahuanacos Incas

Mayas
500 BC, Yucatan Peninsula Periods
Classic Period (Old Empire) - Up to the 9th c.
Built several cities Developed a system of writing and numbers Developed a very accurate calendar

Post-classic period (New Empire)
Migration of Mayas to the northern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula A theocratic form of government was established

Decline
Toltec warriors conquered the Mayas in the 12th c. and remained in power for 200 years.

Achievements of the Mayas
Cities
Were used primarily as religious centers Majority of the Mayas lived as farmers outside the city

Architecture Ideographic system of writing Calendar Concept of zero, number system base 20

Toltecs
Settled in Central Mexico, near modern-day Mexico City

Aztecs
Invaded Central Mexico in the 13th c. Tenochtitlan – built c. 1325, ws center of the Aztec Empire. Had 5M people by 1500 Leader: Chief of Men. Was Montezuma when the Spaniards arrive

Aztec Culture
Education: At the age of 15, the sons of nobles and merchants were educated to become warriors or priests. There were women priests. Marriage was arranged by parents. Women married at 16, men at 20. Polytheism

Aztec Culture
Aztecs believed that the world had been created and destroyed 4 times. Fifth and present creation due to Quetzalcoatl – a feathered serpent of self-sacrifice Aztecs believe that human sacrifices were necessary

Tiahuanacos
Ruins in the Andes Mountains Died around 900 A.D.

Incas
Center: Macchu Picchu Height of civilization: 100-400 AD 11th century: settled at the valley of the Andes Cuzco, City of the Sun 16th c.: 12M people dominated

Inca Government
Emperor: Inca, considered as descendant of the Sun god, was worshipped Gov’t owned all means of production and distribution. Gov’t also controlled the private lives of its people. Quipus – strings of different colors used for records.


								
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