Wikijunior:Ancient Civilizations/Olmec

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What country did they live in?[edit | edit source]

An Olmec statue

The Olmecs lived in Mexico and Central America from c. 1,600 BC-400 BC.

What did their buildings look like?[edit | edit source]

What did they eat?[edit | edit source]

The Olmecs ate maize, beans, squash, cassava, sweet potato, fish, turtle, snake, mollusks, crabs, shellfish, birds, peccary, opossum, raccoon, rabbit, deer, dogs.

What did they wear?[edit | edit source]

What did their writing look like?[edit | edit source]

Some archeologists believe the Cascajal Block to contain writing of the Olmecs, while others are skeptical due to its singularity and lack of resemblance to other Mesoamerican writing systems of its date. The hieroglyphic Isthmian script is believed by some archeologists to contain later Olmec writing, which is debated as well.

What did they believe?[edit | edit source]

Interpretation of Olmec artifacts lead archeologists to believe that the Olmecs practiced anthropomorphic polytheism, with activities being led by rulers, priests, and shamans. Olmec rulers used their supposed links with the Olmec gods to legitimize their ruling. No religious Olmec texts have been found to date, and thus the precise details of the Olmec religion are uncertain.

Are some of them famous even today?[edit | edit source]

What is left of them today?[edit | edit source]

Aside from archeological sites themselves, Olmec artifacts that have been found include colossal heads, rectangular altars or thrones, standing sculptures, stelas, jade face masks, and Kunz axes.