Atlantis Online
December 07, 2019, 01:59:46 pm
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Underwater caves off Yucatan yield three old skeletons—remains date to 11,000 B.C.
http://www.edgarcayce.org/am/11,000b.c.yucata.html
 
  Home Help Arcade Gallery Links Staff List Calendar Login Register  

Teotihuacán

Pages: [1] 2 3 4   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Teotihuacán  (Read 286 times)
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« on: August 17, 2007, 01:14:23 pm »



Teotihuacán [teotiwa'kan] was, at its height in the first half of the 1st millennium CE, the largest pre-Columbian city in the Americas. The civilization and cultural complex associated with the site is also referred to as Teotihuacán. Its influence spread throughout Mesoamerica; evidence of Teotihuacano presence, if not outright political and economic control, can be seen at numerous sites in Veracruz and the Maya region.

The city was located in what is now the San Juan Teotihuacán municipality in the State of México, Mexico, approximately 40 km (24.8 mi) northeast of Mexico City. It covers a total surface area of 83 km² and was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.
Report Spam   Logged

Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2007, 01:15:41 pm »

The name Teotihuacán was given by the Nahuatl-speaking Aztec centuries after the fall of the city. The term has been glossed as 'birthplace of the gods,' reflecting Nahua creation myths that took place in Teotihuacán. Another translation was offered by Thelma Sullivan, who interprets the name as "place of those who have the road of the gods."

The original name of the city is unknown, but it appears in hieroglyphic texts from the Maya region as 'puh', or "Place of Reeds". This suggests that the Maya understood Teotihuacán as a 'Place of Reeds' similar to other Central Mexican settlements that took the name 'Tollan,' such as Tula-Hidalgo and Cholula. This naming convention led to much confusion in the early 20th century as scholars debated whether Teotihuacán or Tula-Hidalgo was the Tollan described by 16th–century chronicles. It now seems clear that 'Tollan' may be understood as a generic term applied to any large settlement, rather like the modern expression "the Big Smoke". In the Mesoamerican concept of urbanism, Tollan and other language equivalents serve as a metaphor, linking the bundles of reeds and rushes that formed part of the lacustrine environment of the Valley of Mexico and the large gathering of people in a city.
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2007, 01:16:34 pm »



The opposing view, from the Pyramid of the Sun.
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2007, 01:18:23 pm »

Origins and foundation

The early history of Teotihuacán is quite mysterious, and the origin of its founders is debated. For many years, archaeologists believed it was built by the Toltec people, an early Mexican civilization. This belief was based on Aztec writings which attributed the site to the Toltecs. However, the Nahuatl word "Toltec" means "great craftsman" and may not always refer to the Toltec civilization. Also, Teotihuacán predates the Toltec civilization, ruling them out as the city's founders. Other scholars have put forth the Totonac people as the founders of Teotihuacán, and the debate continues to this day. There is evidence that at least some of the people living in Teotihuacán came from areas influenced by the Teotihuacano civilization, including the Zapotec, Mixtec and Maya peoples. The culture and architecture of Teotihuacán was influenced by the Olmec people, who are considered to be the "mother civilization" of Mesoamerica. The earliest buildings at Teotihuacán date to about 200 BCE, and the largest pyramid, the Pyramid of the Sun, was completed by 100 CE.

Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2007, 01:19:17 pm »



Teotihuacán and other important Classic Era settlements.
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2007, 01:20:55 pm »

Zenith

The city reached its zenith between 150 and 450, when it was the center of a powerful culture whose influence extended through much of the Mesoamerican region. At its height the city covered over 30 km² (over 11½ square miles), and probably housed a population of over 150,000 people, possibly as many as 250,000. Various districts in the city housed people from across the Teotihuacano region of influence that spread south as far as Guatemala. Notably absent from the city are fortifications and military structures.

The nature of political and cultural interactions between Teotihuacán and the centers of the Maya region (as well as elsewhere in Mesoamerica) has been a long-standing and significant area for debate in Mesoamerican scholarship. It is clearly established that substantial exchange and interaction occurred over the centuries from the Terminal Preclassic to the Mid Classic period, and that "Teotihuacan-inspired ideologies" and motifs persisted at Maya centers into the Late Classic long after Teotihuacan itself had declined. However, there are several schools of thought contending the extent and degree of Teotihuacano influence, which range from a direct and even militaristic dominance, to one where the adoption of 'foreign' traits was part of a selective, conscious and bi-directional cultural diffusion.

Architectural styles prominent at Teotihuacan are also found widely dispersed at a number of distant Mesoamerican sites, which some researchers have interpreted as evidence for Teotihuacan's far-reaching interactions and political or militaristic dominance. A style that has been particularly associated with Teotihuacan is known as talud-tablero, in which an inwards-sloping external side of a structure (talud) is surmounted by a rectangular panel (tablero). Variants of the generic style are found in a number of Maya region sites, including Tikal, Kaminaljuyu, Copan, Becan, and Oxkintok, and particularly in the Petén Basin and the central Guatemalan highlands. However, it has been established that the talud-tablero style pre-dates its earliest appearance at Teotihuacan in the Early Classic period, and instead seems to have first originated in the Tlaxcala-Puebla region during the Preclassic Analyses have also been able to trace the development into local variants of the talud-tablero style at sites such as Tikal, where its use precedes the 5th-century appearance of iconographic motifs shared with Teotihuacan. Thus it appears that the talud-tablero style disseminated through Mesoamerica generally from the end of the Preclassic and not specifically or only via Teotihuacano influence. It is unclear how or from where the style spread into the Maya region.
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2007, 01:21:33 pm »

The city was a center of industry, home to many potters, jewelers and craftsmen. Teotihuacán is known for producing a great number of obsidian artifacts. Unfortunately no ancient Teotihuacano non-ideographic texts are known to exist (or known to have existed), but mentions of the city in inscriptions from Maya cities show that Teotihuacán nobility travelled to and perhaps conquered local rulers as far away as Honduras. Maya inscriptions mention an individual nicknamed by scholars as "Spearthrower Owl", apparently ruler of Teotihuacán, who reigned for over 60 years and installed his relatives as rulers of Tikal and Uaxactún in Guatemala. Most of what we infer about the culture at Teotihuacán comes from the murals that adorn the site and others, like the Wagner Murals, found in private collections, and from hieroglyphic inscriptions made by the Maya describing their encounters with Teotihuacano conquerors.

Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2007, 01:22:30 pm »



A Platform along the Avenue of the Dead demonstrating the talud-tablero architectural style.
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2007, 01:23:19 pm »

Collapse

It was previously believed that sometime during the 7th or 8th centuries, the city was sacked and burned by invaders, possibly the Toltecs. More recent evidence, however, seems to indicate that the burning was limited to the structures and dwellings associated primarily with the elite class. Some see this as evidence that the burning was from an internal uprising and that the invasion theory is flawed due to the fact that early archaeological work on the city was focused exclusively on the palaces and temples, places used by the elites, and because all of these sites showed burning, archaeologists concluded that the whole city was burned. Instead, it is now known that the destruction in the city was focused on major civic structures along the Avenue of the Dead. Some statues seem to have been destroyed in a methodical way, their fragments dispersed. Evidence for population decline beginning around the 6th century lends some support to the internal unrest hypothesis. The decline of Teotihucán has been correlated with the droughts related to the Climate changes of 535–536. This theory is supported by the archeological remains that show a rise in the percentage of juvenile skeletons with evidence of malnutrition during the 6th century. This does not conflict with either of the above theories however since both increased warfare and internal unrest can also be effects of a general period of drought and famine.  Other nearby centers such as Cholula, Xochicalco, and Cacaxtla attempted to fill the powerful vacuum left by Teotihuacán's decline. They may have aligned themselves against Teotihuacán in an attempt to reduce its influence and power. The art and architecture at these sites shows an interest in emulating Teotihuacán forms, but also a more eclectic mix of motifs and iconography from other parts of Mesoamerica, particularly the Maya region.
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #9 on: August 17, 2007, 01:25:11 pm »



Stone mask discovered at Teotihuacán, 3rd to 7th century CE
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #10 on: August 17, 2007, 01:26:02 pm »

Teotihuacano culture

People


There is archaeological evidence that Teotihuacán was a multi-ethnic city, with distinct Zapotec, Mixtec, Maya and what seem to be Nahua quarters. The Totonacs have always maintained that they were the ones who built it, a story that was corroborated later by the Aztecs.

Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #11 on: August 17, 2007, 01:26:33 pm »

Language

In his 2001 paper, Terrence Kaufman presents linguistic evidence suggesting that an important ethnic group in Teotihuacán was of Totonacan and/or Mixe-Zoquean linguistic affiliation. He uses this to explain general influences from Totonacan and Mixe-Zoquean languages in many other Mesoamerican languages many of which do not have any known history of contact with either of the above-mentioned groups.

Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #12 on: August 17, 2007, 01:27:24 pm »

Religion

The religion of Teotihuacán is similar to those of other Mesoamerican cultures. Many of the same gods were worshiped, including the Feathered Serpent and The Rain god. Teotihuacán was a major religious center, and the priests probably had a great deal of political power. As with other Mesoamerican cultures, Teotihuacános practiced human sacrifice. Human bodies and animal sacrifices have been found during excavations of the pyramids at Teotihuacán; it is believed that when the buildings were expanded, sacrifices were made to dedicate the new building. The victims were probably enemy warriors captured in battle and then brought to the city to be ritually sacrificed so the city could prosper. Some were decapitated, some had their hearts removed, others were killed by being hit several times over the head and some were even buried alive. Animals that were considered sacred and represented mythical powers and military might were also buried alive but imprisoned in cages: cougars, a wolf, eagles, a falcon, an owl, and even venomous snakes.
Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #13 on: August 17, 2007, 01:28:12 pm »

Site layout

The city's broad central avenue, called "Avenue of the Dead" (a translation from its Nahuatl name Miccaotli), is flanked by impressive ceremonial architecture, including the immense Pyramid of the Sun (second largest in the New World after the Great Pyramid of Cholula) and the Pyramid of the Moon. Along the Avenue of the Dead are many smaller talud-tablero platforms. The Aztecs believed they were tombs, inspiring the name of the avenue. Now they are known to be ceremonial platforms that were topped with temples. Further down the Avenue of the Dead is the area known as the Citadel, containing the ruined Temple of the Feathered Serpent. This area was a large plaza surrounded by temples that formed the religious and political center of the city. The name "Citadel" was given to it by the Spanish, who believed it was a fort. Many of the rich and powerful Teotihuacanos lived in Palaces near the temples, the largest of these covering more than 3300 m². Most of the common people lived in large apartment buildings spread across the city. Many of the buildings contained workshops that produced pottery and other goods.

The geographical layout of Teotihuacán is a good example of the Mesoamerican tradition of planning cities, settlements and buildings as a representation of the Teotihuacano view of the Universe. Its urban grid is aligned to precisely 15.5º east of North. The Street of the Dead, in particular, seems to line up with Cerro Gordo to the north of the Pyramid of the Moon. Pecked-cross circles throughout the city and in the surrounding regions indicate how the grid was managed over long distances.

Report Spam   Logged
Michelle Sandberg
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 3838



« Reply #14 on: August 17, 2007, 01:29:06 pm »

Archaeological site

Knowledge of the huge ruins of Teotihuacán was never lost. After the fall of the city, various squatters lived on the site. During Aztec times, the city was a place of pilgrimage and identified with the myth of Tollan, the place where the sun was created. Teotihuacán astonished the Spanish conquistadores during the post-conquest era. Today Teotihuacán is one of the most noted archaeological attractions in Mexico.

Report Spam   Logged
Pages: [1] 2 3 4   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by EzPortal
Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
SMF For Free - Create your own Forum
Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines
Privacy Policy