Comparison Of Izapa And Aztec Culture

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Ever wonder why certain traditions can be noticed within a mix of unrelated cultures? Well some cultures may not be so distant after all. Izapa is an ancient civilization that arose around 1500 B.C and is located along the Pacific coast of the Isthmus of Tehuantēpec in the district of Chiapas, Mexico. Not far from the Izapan civilizations are two different ancient communities called the Olmec and the Mayan. At first glance these cultures may not seem to be related but at closer inspection archaeologists have discovered strange findings that can link them all together. Izapan culture branched off from the Olmecs and eventually spread into the Mayan culture, these three civilizations are all connected to each other through traditions.…show more content…
The Olmecs is an ancient civilization that had traditions of their own, writing on stelae and the way they worshiped their gods on throws and alters. The way of worship seemed to have followed over to Izapa. As Masks of the Spirit explains the worship is the way they used to symbolize the status, rise or fall, and the symbols of certain gods or rulers on the owns and alters. This is almost exactly what the Izapan culture does to symbolize their gods to with their own rulers or gods. The tradition in which you write on stelae to show important events also seemed to have been passed down to Izapa from Olmec. Although something so simple seems to be just a coincidence other evidence disagrees. The tradition of writing on stelae wasn't the only thing that was passed on, a certain god was passed on with the stelae drawings. Though the Izapan version seemed to be more detailed and looked more powerful. The mask of their water and rain god has been described in both of the ancient writings, along with descriptions of what the god does in the drawings. "Olmec art preshadows Izapan art in subject, matter, in style, and even in specific iconographic elements." ( P. Markman, R. Markman, 1989) Though the Olmecs weren't the only ones to pass down a tradition, Izapa passed one down to the…show more content…
This is strongly believed to have been because of the Izapan civilization. Mayan communities have even been found in close proximity to where most of the Izapan ritual cites are located. Though even more curious is what was described on the stelae, the same water and rain god as transcribed on both the Olmec and Izapan stelae. "Classic Maya civilization's Olmec ancestry is traceable through Izapan culture." (P. Markman, R. Markman, 1989) In the book Mexico it describes a series of Izapan monuments that are built along the coast of Guatemala and continue into the highlands. They abruptly stop and a set of new monuments take place, Mayan ones. Only the Mayan monuments are some of the earliest ones they have from the culture, they eventually evolved into some thing a little different from the early ones but still, Mayan. The first Mayan monuments they found trailing off of the Izapan ones showed very similar features to the Izapan ones. Such as the water and rain god they keep finding in all three

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