Maya, Aztec, & Inca Civilizations

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Maya Timeframe
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400 BC – 900 AD
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Maya Geography & Cities
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rural towns in Guatemala, Mexico
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Maya Food Supply
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They were very successful farmers. Their main crop was corn. They had a surplus which made it easy for their people to study other things.
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Maya Social Structure
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They had a class system. A lot of their society were peasants and laborers, which was the bottom class. They also had artisans and artists. Society was not able to move up in the class system.
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Maya Government
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They had a king, who had all of the power. They also had nobels under the king. Nobels were like our legislators being under the president.
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Maya Religion
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They worshiped many gods. To worship the gods they often performed human and animal sacrifices.
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Maya Technology
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They studied astronomy, which gave them the ability to create a very accurate calendar. They were also very good at math. They were the first people to use a zero in their number system.
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Maya Decline
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They began to desert their towns around 900 AD; possibly because of military pressure from the Aztec.
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Maya Arts
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Because they were successful farmers, their people were able to specialize in the arts like basket weaving, jewelry making, and stone carving.
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Maya Writing
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They developed their own system of writing. They used glyphs – pictures that represented objects or sounds.
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Aztec Time Frame
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1200 AD
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Aztec Geography & Cities
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Valley of Mexico, they established a city named Tenochtilan, this was the larges city in the world at the time
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Aztec Food Supply
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They were farmers. They specialized in floating gardens. Their crops included corn and beans. They also developed irrigation systems by carving terraces into hillsides.
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Aztec Social Structure
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They had a class system that you could move up by military and public service. They had a large working class. The working class farmed along with the slaves, which were at the bottom of the system.
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Aztec Government
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They were ruled by an emperor that had a council of Nobles like our president has a cabinet. They also had a warrior elite that was one of the upper classes.
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Aztec Religion
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They worshiped many gods, especially the god of war. They worshiped the god of war with human sacrifices of their enemies.
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Aztec Technology
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They were great engineers, designing all the elaborate roads and bridges. They also had a lot of medical knowledge.
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Aztec Decline
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They were a forceful empire that expanded by taking over other empires.
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Aztec Arts
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They had a large class of artisans that included carpenters, silversmiths, and masons.
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Aztec Writing
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Their priests were in charge of recording their history and writings.
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Inca Timeframe
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1200 AD
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Inca Geography & Cities
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South America – modern day Peru, the Valley of Cuzco; They started out simple but grew into complex cities
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Inca Food Supply
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They were farmers and hunters. They used terraces for irrigation.
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Inca Social Structure
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Their society was structured much like the Maya. They were born into a class. They had a large Artisan class.
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Inca Government
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They were ruled by a King who claimed to be from their Sun god.
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Inca Religion
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They worshiped many gods. The most important was called the Sun god.
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Inca Technology
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They were engineers. They developed and maintained roads. With the use of the roads, they developed the fastest communication system of the time.
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Inca Decline
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They expanded buy taking over other empires.
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Inca Arts
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Their artisans made colorful pottery and textiles. They were also good with metals.
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Inca Writing
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They did not develop a writing system; however, they used a system of knot-tying to record information.

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