The Mayans

The Mayans

The Mayans were an ancient civilization that built giant pyramids that they used for astronomy. This society lived on the territory of modern day Mexico. The earliest Mayan settlements date back to about 1800 B.C. In these settlements, the main activity was farming maize, squash, beans, and cassava. The first Mayan civilization were the Olmec, who lived from 2,500 B.C. to 400 B.C.

In addition to knowing how to farm, the Mayans also knew how to construct pyramids and build cities. One of their biggest cities which can be still visited and is very well-preserved is Tikal which is in Guatemala.

Tikal, Guatemala

One of their most important foods was corn, which was the main source of nourishment for them, since it was very easy to grow in that particular area.

Unlike other nations, the Mayans were divided into different city-states that were always at war with each other. Each state was ruled by a family that was thought to be a descendant of their gods.

From 250-900 A.D. was the golden age of the Mayans because there were many thriving Mayan cities. In this time period they invented the alphabet, the 365-day calendar, a number system, the number zero, chocolate, and basketball.

The Mayans were very religious and believed in many “gods,” they  had their own mythology. Many of their structures were dedicated to all sorts of “gods.” They thought that their scientific discoveries pleased the “gods,” so this prompted them to find out more about the world around them.

Even today, some descendants of the ancient Mayans still live in their territories in Mexico.