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Warm-up #5 Describe how the Mayan social class system was organized.

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Presentation on theme: "Warm-up #5 Describe how the Mayan social class system was organized."— Presentation transcript:

1 Warm-up #5 Describe how the Mayan social class system was organized.
When did the Mayan empire begin to decline? Why do you think it happened?


3 Chapter 14 Standards Review
7a. What plants did early farmers in Mesoamerica grow for food? What pants did farmers grow in South America? Mesoamericans grew maize, beans, and squash. South Americans grew maize, beans, and potatoes. 7b. What do Olmec towns, sculptures, and other items tell us about Olmec society? Olmec towns, sculptures and other items tell us that the Olmec were the first complex civilization in the Americans. They developed religions, government, science, and trade systems which influenced later Latin American peoples. 8a. What were two important trade goods for the early Maya? Cotton, cacao, jade and obsidian were important trade goods for the early Maya.

4 8b. Why did the Maya civilization decline?
The Maya civilization may have declined due to a population increase, food shortage, weak soil, competition for land, harsh demands of Maya Kings leading to rebellion, war, or climate issues like a drought. 8c. For which people in Maya society was life probably pleasant and secure? For which people was life less pleasant or secure? Life was pleasant for kings and the upper classes but less pleasant for the lower classes who farmed and were forced to work on building projects and fight in wars. 9b. How did daily life for the upper and lower classes of Maya society differ? Members of the lower classes work all day to support themselves and serve the upper classes. Members of the upper classes lived very comfortably.


6 Essential Question Where did the Aztecs build their empire and how did they adapt the land make it work for them?

7 The Aztec

8 The Legend While they were living in the swamps, the Aztec priests received a vision. In this vision, the Aztec god, Huitzilopochtli, told them to look for a place to settle where they saw an eagle perched on a cactus, eating a snake. The Aztecs found this sign on a small reed-covered island in the middle of a shallow lake. There they started building their capital city, Tenochtitlan, in 1325.

9 But what really happened?

10 I. Geography

11 Aztecs


13 A. Tenochtitlan Main Aztec City
Built on an island in the middle of Lake Texcoco. Located in modern Mexico in North America Limited space but excellent farmland

14 Technology

15 B. Chinampas Since the Aztecs didn’t have much land, they made their own! They would take dirt from the bottom of the lake and add it to their islands. They ended up with a “floating garden”.

16 Video Break!


18 II. Religion and War A) For the Aztecs, religion and war went together. The Aztecs went to war to capture enemy soldiers who would become slaves to be sacrificed. It was basically a much bloodier version of the Maya religion.

19 B. Aztec Sacrifice Aztec history says that during one religious ceremony over 20,000 people were killed in 4 days. While this may have been possible, it is probably exaggerated. Either way, sacrifices were common for the Aztecs.

20 C. The Ball Game Another religious tradition copied from the Mayans was the ball game. Legend says the gods fought for control of man by playing this game. The losers, and sometimes the winners, would be sacrificed.

21 III. Government

22 Growing the Empire 1421 Triple Alliance – three biggest city-states came together under one rule to conquer the other city-states. The Aztecs grew in size by conquering their neighbors. The Aztecs were so scary that most tribes didn’t even fight back. Some rumors said they even wore human skin…


24 IV. The Sun Stone

25 The Sun Stone

26 Sun Stone Calendar modeled after the Mayan one.
The original weighs almost tons. Each ring represents something different (“suns”, days, etc.) Sun Stone



29 Tonatiuh’s Face- the face of the sun, Lord of Heaven, around which takes place all daily and periodic phenomena.


31 Claws of the sun god- The Sun God is supposedly suspended in space by its claws. We see a human heart in its claw.


33 Jaguar Sun (The first sun): Aztecs believe this age was ruled by giants who were eventually eaten by jaguars.


35 The Winds Sun- the gods turned man into apes so they could hang onto the Earth during terrible hurricanes.



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