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Mesoamerican Civilizations and Modern Civilization

Modern civilization arose after the Industrial Revolution, which began in eighteenth century Great Britain. Machines sped up the manufacture of commodities, and replaced animals of burden. In the ensuing years, any motor was fueled by artificial energy. The resulting speed allowed raw materials to be transported in huge quantities over vast distances. Products could be mass-produced and marketed across the globe. At the same time, new attitudes towards religion were born. Traditional churches began to decline, while the desire for personal freedom induced the development of sexual freedom. In the Western World, this new culture was accepted by a large segment of society.

Mesoamerica

What are the characteristics of the Mesoamerican civilizations? Mesoamerica encompasses the areas of the modern-day countries of Mexico, Central America, and Honduras, encompassing a great diversity of landscapes, linguistics, and culture. Mesoamerica was also the site of a remarkable agricultural revolution, which brought about a 260-day calendar and a diverse culture. The ancient cultures also practiced sophisticated art and developed elaborate religions, and their lifestyles were marked by a high level of sophistication.

Mesoamericans lived in a variety of ecological systems, including the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the second largest in the world, and the La Mosquitia rainforest, which comprises the Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve, the Tawahka Asangni National Park, and the Bosawas Biosphere Reserve. In addition to the diverse ecosystems, Mesoamerica is home to some of the world’s largest archaeological sites, including Tikal in northern Guatemala.

Egypt

Before the Pyramids, the Egyptians had been building tombs for the rich. These tombs symbolized the growing division between the upper and lower classes of Egyptian society. The elite, however, were able to build elaborate tombs to honor their loved ones. The typical tomb for these elites was called a mastaba. These tombs are shaped like a pyramid with a flat top. The pyramids themselves are a great example of early Egyptian architecture.

The earliest records of Egyptian writing date back to 6000 BCE. The Egyptians had no control of wheels until the Hyksos arrived in the Second Intermediate Period of Egypt. Even before then, the Egyptians had developed technological and artistic skills, and were able to maintain written records using hieroglyphics. The Egyptians were able to trade and build vast trading networks throughout the area. They also cultivated a vast variety of crops.

Mesopotamia

Mesopotamia is a region that predates the rise of civilization in modern times. In the early period, cities were developed, with some city-states conquering neighboring ones. The conquering king would become the overlord, known as the high king. Such extensive states were only viable for a generation, as it was difficult to hold the conquests together in the face of external invasions and internal rebellions. However, as the years passed, the region would again become a patchwork of small cities.

The ancient city-states of Mesopotamia had advanced civilizations, including the earliest form of agriculture and writing. Their development of math and writing is also noteworthy. In the area, they invented the zodiac, plows, spoked wheels, and 60-digit numbering. Despite these impressive achievements, Mesopotamia is perhaps best known as the cradle of civilizations.

Mesoamerican culture

The term Mesoamerica comes from the Greek word mesos, meaning middle, and refers to the geographical area of the Americas, which includes parts of central Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador. It is also sometimes referred to as “middle earth”, since it is partially in North America. Mesoamerican civilization has existed for over three thousand years and is comprised of a number of distinct cultures.

Historically, the ancient civilizations of Mesoamerica were distinct, yet they shared similar characteristics. They communicated constantly throughout their development, yet their languages, customs, and traditions were very different. Archaeologists divide Mesoamerican history into three major periods, or sub-periods. While some scholars believe Mesoamerican civilization ended in the 1519 arrival of the Spaniards in Tenochtitlan, others claim it continued under the Spanish Empire.

Mesoamerican government

The first Mesoamerican government developed during the Olmec culture in 1200 BC. As cities were growing quickly, their leaders looked to better govern the people. They sought stable political organizations to guide their people. Mesoamerican governments were able to provide better control over their population thanks to the help of technology. Here are some of the earliest examples of Mesoamerican governments. And you can learn more about them today!

The Mesoamerican government had several characteristics that defined the cultures. They used a writing system similar to that of the Egyptians, which preserved the knowledge of gods, rulers, cycles of time, and outstanding historical events. Some of these aspects are evident in the pyramids and structures they constructed. In addition to the Maya civilization, the Aztecs were part of a complex social structure. Some of their artifacts have survived.