The Olmecs: America's First Civilization

The Olmecs: America's First Civilization

by Richard A. Diehl
     
 

ISBN-10: 0500285039

ISBN-13: 9780500285039

Pub. Date: 11/19/2005

Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc

The enormous basalt carved heads of the Olmecs are as impressive as those of Easter Island, but they belong to a civilisation which has for many years been little understood. Drawing on the most recent archaeological findings from projects carried out in southeastern Mexico, Richard Diehl pieces together the story of the Olmec civilisation. Lasting from 1500 to 400 BC…  See more details below

Overview

The enormous basalt carved heads of the Olmecs are as impressive as those of Easter Island, but they belong to a civilisation which has for many years been little understood. Drawing on the most recent archaeological findings from projects carried out in southeastern Mexico, Richard Diehl pieces together the story of the Olmec civilisation. Lasting from 1500 to 400 BC, the Olmecs were America's oldest civilisation and two of its major centres, San Lorenzo, Mesoamerica's first city, and La Venta, which emerged as the pre-eminent society in Mexico and Central America, are studied in detail. The main part of the book examines Olmec life, culture and art and, more specifically, its cities, palaces, pyramids, plazas, tombs and religious sanctuaries, its technologies, belief systems, subsistence, trade, travel, its monumental sculpture and jade crafts. The influence of the Olmec on other cultures of Mexico, questions of how they were perceived by the Aztecs and Spanish conquistadors, as well as a review of Olmec studies from the 19th century to the present, are also included.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780500285039
Publisher:
W W Norton & Co Inc
Publication date:
11/19/2005
Series:
Ancient Peoples and Places Series
Edition description:
Illustrated
Pages:
208
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.50(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

1Introduction11
2San Lorenzo's realm29
3La Venta's realm60
4Olmec daily life and culture83
5Olmec art108
6The Olmecs abroad : Eastern Mesoamerica126
7The Olmecs abroad : Western Mesoamerica152
8Epi-Olmec culture181

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