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Flashcards in Aztec Deck (75):
1

What was the environment of Central Mexico like during the Archaic Period?

Arid steppe, grassy, not a lot of trees

2

What were the Archaic people of Central Mexico eating?

Jackrabbit, deer, occasionally mastodon. They also began domesticating plants, including gourds, squash, tomatoes, avocados, beans, and teosinte

3

What was the role of teosinte in the origins of agriculture in Mexico?

Teosinte was in the process of being domesticated into what we know as modern-day corn. The Central Mexican people deliberately selected the best corn fruit to replant in order to produce better crop

4

When did the Archaic Period occur?

8000-2000 BC

5

What other agricultural crops had wild ancestors gathered during the Archaic Period?

They gathered agave, mesquite, prickly pear, and piñon nuts. They grew gourd, squash, beans, tomatoes, avocados, chili peppers

6

What was life like during the dry season in the Archaic Period?

People broke up into micro bands, with 4-8 people, usually family members. They lived nomadically

7

What was life like during the wet season in the Archaic Period?

People lived in macro bands, which consisted of 2-4 micro bands. The wet season was optimal for hunting and gathering. During this time together trading, marriages of people from different micro bands and rituals occurred.

8

What activities did the earliest rituals in Mexico involve?

Early rituals consisted of dances or games. They also consisted of human sacrifice, either hoping for a successful crop or thanking the gods for a previous successful crop

9

Why did Archaic people move across great distances over the course of the year?

They spent times in micro band and macro band camps throughout the year. During the dry season, it made more sense to live in small groups, as food was harder to come by, and providing for a small group was easier. During the wet season, they came together in macro bands, which consisted of 2-4 micro bands. In these large groups, they could better hold group hunts and perform rituals. They could also trade and marry.

10

When did the formative period occur?

Between 1600 and 850 BC

11

How does the domestication of corn relate to life in villages?

People could depend on corn to provide them food throughout the year, which allowed the nomadic people to settle and form permanent villages

12

What technology do people develop for the first time during the Early Formative?

During the Early Formative, the first homes were built as people adjusted from a nomadic lifestyle to a more permanent living site. As well as pottery

13

What are the associated changes in ritual activity in the Early Formative?

Ritual buildings could now be built. Rituals became more elaborate, as people could have ritual artifacts because they didn't have to carry them far distances

14

Clans - what are they and how did they serve as mechanism to organize society?

Clans were groups of people who claimed to have a common descent. These groups created an us versus them mentality in society, which lead to raiding. If someone was killed by someone from another clan, the clan of the person who had died would kill 1-2 people from the clan of the killer. This was seen as a way to exact revenge. These raids would sometimes consist of burning each other villages, included houses and men's houses. There is evidence of stockades built to defend from raids.

15

How is prestige acquired in an egalitarian society?

Any prestige was achieved by people during their life. Prestige was earned, not inherited

16

Are villages autonomous in an Egalitarian society? Why or why not?

Yes, villages are autonomous. Every village was separate politically, which goes along with the egalitarian view that everyone is born equal

17

What are the archaeological indicators of inter-village conflict?

Burn marks on artifacts can be found. For example, burn marks and remains of carbon from stockade walls in evidence of conflicts and raids

18

How is prestige acquired in a rank society?

Prestige was based on your family, people are born into prestige?

19

Are villages autonomous in a ranked society? Why or why not?

No, villages are not autonomous. We have evidence of this because there were ruins of villages that had builds made of stone that could only be found on the land of a smaller nearby village. Archaeologists also found figures of people in positions of authority and obedience. This suggests that some villages were considered better than others. Also, they found children buried with more sumptuary goods then they could have earned in their short lifetime. This gives the indication that these children were born into prestige.

20

What are sumptuary goods and how do they relate to rank? What are the specific sumptuary goods in Formative Mexico?

Sumptuary goods are valuable or rare goods that only elite people could afford or use. They directly relate to rank. Some sumptuary goods included jade, polished mirror or marine shells

21

What do women's ritual activities consist of and where do they take place during the Formative period?

Women's activities took place in the home. They would use figures to act out scenes, representing deceased relatives. These rituals consisted of the women asking their deceased ancestors to act upon their request?

22

What do men's ritual activities consist of and where do they take place during the Formative period?

Men's activities took place in specially made men's houses. These houses were painted a white color using lye, and have a pit of limestone in the center of them. Archaeologists found lyme and tobacco mixed in the pit. This was used ritualistically and had a slightly hallucinogenic effect. Men used the men's houses for initiations, to plan raids or to talk about plans for their villages made a white color and had a pit of limestone in them

23

Which two deities are represented on pottery in the Formative period?

The two deities represented on pottery were on the deities of the sky and earth. They were often represented as the sky serpent and earthquake man.

24

What time period was the Early Formative?

1150-850 BC

25

What time period was the Middle Formative?

850-500 BC

26

What is a chiefdom?

A chiefdom is the territory controlled by a hereditary chief

27

How is the position of chief normally passed on?

The position of chief was typically passed on within a family, who claimed to have supernatural descent

28

What are administrative tiers in a chiefdom? How many are there?

There are typically 2-3 levels of the hierarchy. There was a village where the chief lived, surrounded by several satellite villages. These secondary villages were run by relatives of the chief. There was then sometimes a tier of tertiary villages

29

How are chiefly alliances created?

The village of the chief received raw materials for building from satellite villages, in return the chief arranged marriage between one of his female relatives and an important male in the satellite village. They also strengthened alliances by holding feasts for the satellite villages also.

30

How are chiefdoms internally unstable?

When a chief died, there was not always a clear cut decision on who should become the next chief?

31

How are chiefdoms externally unstable?

Chiefdoms were fairly close to one another, and there was natural competition between these nearby chiefdoms

32

What do the colossal heads in San Lorenzo inform us about chiefly competition?

These heads were made of basalt, imported from far away and required a lot of man power to transport to San Lorenzo. The ability to do this was a great display of power

33

What was found at the La Venta chiefdom?

Here we found a basalt column tomb, which was imported and showed the importance of the person buried there. We also found jade figurines in the tomb, found in a scene. Also in La Venta we see signs of social inequality in terms of the type of stingray spine people were using to ritualistically cut their tongues or earlobes to get flowing blood

34

What was found at the Chalcatzingo chiefdom?

This chiefdom was located right near a diorite mountain. Along the entire hillside, they created sort of drains to get irrigation from the runoff down the mountain. At this site we found a monument of pumas or jaguars attacking humans

35

What was found at the Teopantecuanitlán chiefdom?

Here we found the sunken court. They also had an amphitheater that collected water via canal irrigation

36

Under what conditions do states emerge?

States emerged via military force when rival chiefdoms conquered one another. They eventually grow too large for a single chief to act over, so it becomes a state

37

How many administrative tiers does a state have? What are they?

A state has 4 administrative tiers:
1. The Capital, where the king lives
2. The Administrative Centers
3. Lower Level Administrative Centers
4. Villages with no Administrative Centers

38

How does the ruler of a state control such a large territory?

The territory is broken into provinces, which were governed by family members of the king

39

Where does the ruler live?

Mesoamerican Kings lived in palaces

40

How does the ruler/state collect wealth

The state collects wealth from the administrative centers

41

How can archaeologists tell when a class of full-time priests starts to exist?

The evidence of two-room temples becomes present. The outer room was where worshippers could come, while inner rooms were considered more sacred, and was only for priests

42

What other kinds of full-time specialists are there in states?

Permanent Military Offices were now built in the states

43

What are the name of the three chiefdom in the Valley of Oaxaca?

San José Mogote, Yegüih and Tilcajete

44

How did the three chiefdoms in the Valley of Oaxaca interact?

They were chiefdoms living nearby in the Oaxaca Valley, they were competing for political dominance, and often took part in raids in each other

45

Which of the three chiefdoms in the Valley of Oaxaca gained an early advantage over the others?

The San José Mogote chiefdom

46

Where does San José Mogote community relocated to, and what do they do once they get there?

The community relocated to a 1500 foot mountain buffer zone in which no one had settled previously as they believed it was unsafe. Once there, they built a 3 kilometer defensive wall on the sides that could be climbed

47

Once the capital is established at Monte Albán, how do they unify the Valley of Oaxaca?

They began a military campaign against both Yegüih and Tilcajete, raiding both of them and taking over their chiefdoms. These chiefdoms eventually became a s`tate.

48

What chiefdom was Teotihuacán's Rival?

Cuicuilco

49

How did Teotihuacán defeat its rival?

Through the use of military force

50

How was the layout of the city of Teotihuacán organized?

The city of Teotihuacán was incredibly well organized and thought out. Before people began to inhabit the city, streets were laid out that stretched for miles

51

What was the relationship between commoner compounds and craft specialization?

Commoners often lived in the same compounds as those with similar specializations. They lived that way so that they could live near the people they worked with, and perform their work easier and faster

52

How can archaeologists detect the presence of ethnic enclaves at Teotihuacán

The Oaxaca barrio is evidence of this. Within Teotihuacán, there was found an area that had pottery and other artifacts that resembled those of the people from the Zapotec state

53

What is the Oaxaca barrio? What does it tell us about the main capital states?

The Oaxaca barrio was a place where people from the Zapotec state lived within the area controlled by Teotihuacán. These people who lived here continued to practice pottery and make crafts in similar style to those in Monte Albán

54

Why was a large open space left between the territories of Monte Albán and Teotihuacán?

They created a buffer zone between their two territories to keep peace

55

Why was the Lápida de Bazán such a significant clue in understanding the Teotihuacán-Monte Albán interaction?

The Lápida de Bazán was a treaty between Teotihuacán and Monte Albán. Because these states were so big, they agreed not to fight, and kept diplomats in each others territory. Fighting would cause great destruction. There was monuments of people from the other state in their own state. Archaeologists found pottery also

56

How do 2nd gen states compare to 1st gen states in power and stability?

Second gen states are significantly less powerful and stable, but they had more opportunities to become states. They were smaller and often formed through the alliance of chiefdoms. When these two parties could no longer live in perfect harmony, conflict was a result and the separation of this alliance occurred.

57

Xochicalco and Cacaxtla emerged after the decline of ___

Teotihuacán

58

How does factionalism contribute to the decline of the 2nd-gen state

The political alliances that formed to create the states eventually breaks down, leading to sometimes one of the groups packing up and leaving the state, leaving it too weak to defend itself

59

Tula's territory and exchange networks?

Tula was trading with people as far away as modern day New Mexico, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. As we have evidence of chocolate in New Mexico (something that was not native there), and turquoise in Tula, which was found in Costa Rica and Nicaragua naturally

60

What was the "coatepantli" and which later Mexican civilization adopted it?

Coatepantli was a serpent wall, which separated the sacred and secular parts of the cities. It was adopted by the Aztecs

61

Rival political factions at Tula were each associated with a god: ____ vs ____

Quetzalcoatl versus Tezcatlipoca

62

Tula was burned by

Chichimecs, or Mexica people. These people were the founders of the Aztec empire

63

After the collapse of the Toltec state, small petty arose including ___, ____ and ____

Azcapotzalco, Colhuacan, Texcoco

64

Which 1st Generation state had twin temples?

Teotihuacán

65

Which 1st Generation State built using standardized units of measurement?

Teotihuacán

66

Which 1st Generation generation state used hieroglyphic writing?

The Zapotec

67

Which state did the Nahuatl language originate in?

The Toltec (Tula)

68

Why did the Mexica originally go to Tenochtitlan?

They sacrificed the princess of Colhuacan, done out of respect, but were misunderstood and driven out of the Basin of Mexico

69

Who formed the triple Alliance?

Texcoco, Tlacopan, and Tenochtitlan

70

What is a chacmool?

An altar-like vessel used to hold sacrificial offerings, often human hearts

71

What are Chinampas?

An Aztec agricultural technology - they grew crops in raised lakebed, and used soil cleaned out of the canals in-between to keep the fields fertile

72

Who were pochteca?

Merchants who travelled long distance to trade Aztec goods

73

What was the capital of the Aztec Empire?

Tenochtitlan

74

To which gods was the Templo Mayor (Great Temple) dedicated?

Huitzilipochtli and Tlaloc

75

How were the Spanish conquistadors able to conquer the Aztec empire?

They had advanced weaponry, and they had help from the Tlaxcalans, a rival state of the Aztecs