Aztecs, Mayas, and Incas Unit 2: Background Information
AgendaReview three major civilizations that existedin Central and South America from 2000 B.Cuntil the arrival of the Spanish in the 16thcenturayDiscuss cultures, achievements
Aztec sThe empire was 80,000 square miles and stretched through present day Mexico and Central America
Aztec s The heart of the Aztec Empire was Tenochtitlan. It wasbuilt on Lake Texcoco and had roads and bridges leading into the heart of the city.
Aztec s Most households were made of adobe and contained an openarea in the middle, a kitchen, a shrine to the gods, and bath next door.
Aztec s The Aztecs were a warring culture. Warriors gainedprominence and statusby performing well in battle. Young men were trained at an early age to be warriors.
Aztec s They had hundreds of gods and goddesses. They revolved around nature. Agriculture was important toAztec life so many ofthe gods were related to agriculture. They often made human sacrifices to please the gods.
Aztec sAccording to an Aztecmyth, the white-facedQuetzacuatl - their mostimportant god.He is the god ofintelligence and the godof creation.
Mayas The empire stretched from the Gulf ofMexico to present day Honduras
The pyramid was used as a calendar: four stairways, each with 91 steps and aMayas platform at the top, making a total of 365, equivalent to the number of days in a calendar year. Chichen Itza was animportant city in the empire and became a major market place
Incas Religion was very important. Theyworshiped Viracocha. They worshiped natural forces they called huacas. These were usually related to their crops or agriculture.
IncasThey made exquisite textiles for their families and sold them at the market
AMAZING FACTSThese civilizations introduced chocolate (cocoa), tomato, potato,peppers, peanuts and several other foods to EuropeansThey had a system of government with religious leaders and the richat the top. In Aztec culture you could gain status by being a greatwarriorThe regular people paid taxes to the richTemples to honor the gods and to make sacrifices to keep agriculturestrongThey had elaborate ball games