The Aztec and Mayan Civilizations in the Americas Ashley M. Carpenter Western Civilization II National University June 2, 2012 Abstract From 250 A.D. to the late 1500’s A.D. the Mayans and the Aztecs controlled Central and South America. Each was unique, but still shared a few of the same traits. Both had their own calendar system, counting system, and Polytheistic religious beliefs along with similar temples built to worship their deities. While the Aztecs were the most prominent users of human sacrifice, the Mayans also participated in such rituals. A few differences between these civilizations were the social structure, natural resources, and differing cultural strengths.
The Aztecs were a great society that formed during the years of 1350-1519; in its present day site, of what we know as Mexico City. They believed in the sun god, Huitzilopochtli, who they tried to please by religious sacrifices. With them sacrificing humans, the Aztecs seemed barbaric and uncivilized; however history should say that the Aztecs had a very creative and organized empire. The Aztecs had high demands for its people, were highly religious, and were very organized and creative. History should say that the Aztecs are truly an extravagant and advanced civilization.
The Maya also developed the most advanced writing system in the ancient Americas. They used writing that consisted of 800 glyphs which were like hieroglyphic symbols. They represented words and syllables. The Maya used their writing system to record important historical events like a book called the Codex; only three books from this time remain. Mayan writing contributed the advanced lifestyle along with other developments.
There cultures were very different and yet similar, before the Europeans discovered America, the Aztec, Mayans, and Inca Empires were very different compared to the Pueblo peoples culture, but at they were also very alike in many cultural aspects. The Aztec, Mayan, and Incas differed in many was to that of the Pueblo people. All three tribes practiced human sacrifice but for different reasons; the Aztecs practiced human sacrifice because they believed their God demanded them, the Mayans practiced human sacrifice to maintain order and to maintain
Of these the pyramids were very notable, according to archaeological evidence; it has been shown that the ancient Mayans began building their characteristic ceremonial structures, known as Mayan Pyramids or Pyramid-Temples, about 3,000 years back. Mayan pyramids, in fact, were built in a wide variety of forms to serve a wide variety of functions, apart from religious ones, according to the customs of each region as well as period. (New World Encyclopedia. Web. 03 Dec. 2009) They also built temples; the temples were impressive and decorated structures themselves.
The Aztec Civilization Easier - Aztecs were a wandering Native American tribe who came to Mexico during the 13th century. There they built a great civilization including cities, pyramids, and temples. In 1519 Spanish conquistadors arrived in Mexico and defeated the Aztecs. Harder - Aztec comes from the word Azteca, which is derived from Aztlán ("White Land"). Aztlán is believed to have been the northwestern region of today's Mexico.
It was believed that the kings were the gods’ representatives on earth; the kings had special privileges and special tasks that they had to accomplish. For example the kings ruled by special divinity and were set apart/ away from all other people including the priests. Kings also had to respect and glorify the gods through offerings just as the rest of the people the only thing that was different was that the kings had a greater commitment than the rest because their power was greater than the peoples or priests. The Ubaid people created central locations for places of adoration, and the buildings were used for economic and administrative purposes. Uruk, was a more urbanized version of the Ubaid
Hammurbi ruled this time because God called him to create a code of laws for the people to follow. As for the Axial or Higher Religions the social structure in this society was highly stratified absolute monarchies and in between empires. Religion became something greater making society become more powerful. The different groups had a religion which affected their social structure; each having their own face of God. The Paleolithic Hunters and
Chandler Hickman World Civilization 1 Mrs. Gunter November 19, 2010 The Mayan Civilization The Mayan Indian Civilization was a civilization located in Mesoamerica, or modern day Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Belize areas of Mexico. The Mayan civilization influenced and was influenced by many other settlements in the area. The most recognizable culture of the Mayans developed between 2600 B.C. and A.D. 250. The Mayan civilization originated in the southern areas of Mexico at about 2600 B.C.
Therefore, each city state had its own deities, kings, laws and culture. Conflicts and friction started for the dominance of the region because of the overlapping of these growing cities. Sumerian society showed a distinct social system with a ruling class formed by nobles and priests, a middle class of merchants, scribes and artisans, and finally a lower class made up mainly of farmers (1). Sumerians were creative and likely may be the first on developing a writing system to record diverse events such as taxes, agricultural records, codified set of laws and epic novels. They also established a numerical system that they used to build from calendars to pyramids.