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The Olmec Civilization. First Civilization of the Americas; The Olmecs. The first Civilization was established in Mesoamerica Approximately between 1200-400 B.C.E The Olmec influence the Mayan people Produce high quality crafts. Mesoamerica. Located between central Mexico

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First civilization of the americas the olmecs
First Civilization of the Americas; The Olmecs

The first Civilization was established in Mesoamerica

Approximately between 1200-400 B.C.E

The Olmec influence the Mayan people

Produce high quality crafts


Mesoamerica
Mesoamerica

Located between central Mexico

The center of Olmec civilization was between what is now the states of Veracruz and Tabasco

Earthquakes and volcanoes eruptions

Tropical weather

Very hot and humid

Rich in minerals such as jade, obsidian and quartz


Diet

Corn (maiz)

Beans

Squash

Fishing

Manioc (a calorie rich crop)


Religion
RELIGION

Polytheistic – the belief in more than one deity

Most of their deities had both male and female natures

Human and animal characteristics were also blended

The believed that humans had the ability to transform into an animal such as jaguars, snakes and crocodiles

Rulers were especially associated with Jaguars

The elite used many crituals to control this scociety


Shamans
Shamans

Shamans-Individuals who claim the ability to make direct contact with supernatural powers

They were attach to the elite

organize religious life

Provided advice about the rain(for agriculture purpose)

Used the stars to guide them

They were probably responsible for developing a form of writing


Olmec heads
Olmec Heads

Olmec society were probably ruled by kings

It is believed that the heads represent individual rulers, warriors or ball players

Sixteen heads have been found

The largest one that has been found is 11 feet tall


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