Zapotec Civilization (American Indians Ready Reference)
Article abstract: Their early urban culture thrived and flourished at Monte Albán, influencing later generations of central Mexico.
Five hundred years before the Christian era, the Zapotec peoples of the mountains and valleys of central Mexico—the modern state of Oaxaca—laid foundations for a brilliant culture that reached its height between 700 and 900 c.e. Because the Zapotec had no written language (although they devised hieroglyphs), knowledge of their civilization depends entirely upon the discoveries and analyses of archaeologists and cultural anthropologists. The work of these experts ranges from studies of historic Mesoamerican farming, religion, political organization, and ecology to science, mining, metalworking, trade, and systematic archaeological reconstructions of the great urban site at Monte Albán, as well as lesser sites at Mitla, Etla, Tlacolula, and in the Zimatlán valleys.
Such evidence suggests that by the time Zapotec culture appears in the historical record, about 500 b.c.e., it was already characterized by increasing social and political complexity marked by communities of villages and temple centers. Between the opening of the Christian era and 500 c.e., the Zapotecs had developed a regional political state that reached its cultural apogee at the great urban center at Monte Albán between two hundred and four hundred years later, even as Aztec expansion, military unrest, and large-scale...
(The entire section is 1433 words.)
Show us the love and view this for free! Use the facebook like button, or any other share button on this page, and get this content free!free!
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of this article. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!