180326 History Talk 26th Mar 2018: The Ancients of Mexico

Date: Monday 26th Mar 2018  10:30

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The Ancients of Mexico

Lecturer: Cheda Panajotovic

We often see TV programmes about the great Inca Empire stretching down the whole of the Andes or about ‘The Aztecs’ of Central America. It is a quirk of nature that both should be the ‘Pop Stars’ of Archaeology as both of these in history are but ‘yesterday’s people’. Few even bother to mention The Maya and even fewer The Olmec or The Toltec peoples who were as organised and as progressive given the era in which they lived. Some ‘ancients’ even go back to the 3rd Millennium BC. The temples and the statuary that they left behind them are often as grand as any of Europe’s Michelangelo.

The pyramid temples of ‘The Ancients’ may not be as high as the colossal pyramids of Egypt but they are certainly as grandiose. These were built without using mortar, without metal tools and they did not have the use of the wheel to help with transport of to help make their sumptuous pottery.

Their knowledge of the heavens and their precise predictions of the seasons were carved in circular stone calendars which are worthy of attention especially now that hieroglyphic writing of the Olmec is being deciphered. Certainly, their ancient calendar could serve as well today as it did in days of many centuries long past.