Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans known as American Indians, Indigenous Americans and other terms, are the indigenous peoples of the United States, except Hawaii. There are over 500 federally recognized tribes within the US, about half of which are associated with Indian reservations; the term "American Indian" excludes Native Hawaiians and some Alaska Natives, while Native Americans are American Indians, plus Alaska Natives of all ethnicities. Native Hawaiians are not counted as Native Americans by the US Census, instead being included in the Census grouping of "Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander"; the ancestors of modern Native Americans arrived in what is now the United States at least 15,000 years ago much earlier, from Asia via Beringia. A vast variety of peoples and cultures subsequently developed. Native Americans were affected by the European colonization of the Americas, which began in 1492, their population declined precipitously due to introduced diseases as well as warfare, territorial confiscation and slavery.
After the founding of the United States, many Native American peoples were subjected to warfare and one-sided treaties, they continued to suffer from discriminatory government policies into the 20th century. Since the 1960s, Native American self-determination movements have resulted in changes to the lives of Native Americans, though there are still many contemporary issues faced by Native Americans. Today, there are over five million Native Americans in the United States, 78% of whom live outside reservations; when the United States was created, established Native American tribes were considered semi-independent nations, as they lived in communities separate from British settlers. The federal government signed treaties at a government-to-government level until the Indian Appropriations Act of 1871 ended recognition of independent native nations, started treating them as "domestic dependent nations" subject to federal law; this law did preserve the rights and privileges agreed to under the treaties, including a large degree of tribal sovereignty.
For this reason, many Native American reservations are still independent of state law and actions of tribal citizens on these reservations are subject only to tribal courts and federal law. The Indian Citizenship Act of 1924 granted U. S. citizenship to all Native Americans born in the United States. This emptied the "Indians not taxed" category established by the United States Constitution, allowed natives to vote in state and federal elections, extended the Fourteenth Amendment protections granted to people "subject to the jurisdiction" of the United States. However, some states continued to deny Native Americans voting rights for several decades. Bill of Rights protections do not apply to tribal governments, except for those mandated by the Indian Civil Rights Act of 1968. Since the end of the 15th century, the migration of Europeans to the Americas has led to centuries of population and agricultural transfer and adjustment between Old and New World societies, a process known as the Columbian exchange.
As most Native American groups had preserved their histories by oral traditions and artwork, the first written sources of the conflict were written by Europeans. Ethnographers classify the indigenous peoples of North America into ten geographical regions with shared cultural traits, called cultural areas; some scholars combine the Plateau and Great Basin regions into the Intermontane West, some separate Prairie peoples from Great Plains peoples, while some separate Great Lakes tribes from the Northeastern Woodlands. The ten cultural areas are as follows: Arctic, including Aleut and Yupik peoples Subarctic Northeastern Woodlands Southeastern Woodlands Great Plains Great Basin Northwest Plateau Northwest Coast California Southwest At the time of the first contact, the indigenous cultures were quite different from those of the proto-industrial and Christian immigrants; some Northeastern and Southwestern cultures, in particular, were matrilineal and operated on a more collective basis than that with which Europeans were familiar.
The majority of Indigenous American tribes maintained their hunting grounds and agricultural lands for use of the entire tribe. Europeans at that time had patriarchal cultures and had developed concepts of individual property rights with respect to land that were different; the differences in cultures between the established Native Americans and immigrant Europeans, as well as shifting alliances among different nations in times of war, caused extensive political tension, ethnic violence, social disruption. Before the European settlement of what is now the United States, Native Americans suffered high fatalities from contact with new European diseases, to which they had not yet acquired immunity. Smallpox epidemics are thought to have caused the greatest loss of life for indigenous populations. William M Denevan, noted author and Professor Emeritus of Geography at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said on this subject in his essay "The Pristine Myth: The Landscape of the Americas in 1492".
Old World diseases were the primary killer. In many regions the tropical lowlands, populations fell by 90 percent or more in the first century after the contact. "Estimates of the pre-Columbian population of what today constitutes the U. S. vary ranging from William M Denevan's 3.8 million in his 1992 w
The Pacific Northwest, sometimes referred to as Cascadia, is a geographic region in western North America bounded by the Pacific Ocean to the west and by the Cascade Mountain Range on the east. Though no official boundary exists, the most common conception includes the Canadian province of British Columbia and the U. S. states of Idaho and Washington. Broader conceptions reach north into Southeast Alaska and Yukon, south into northern California, east to the Continental Divide to include Western Montana and parts of Wyoming. Narrower conceptions may be limited to the coastal areas west of the Coast mountains; the variety of definitions can be attributed to overlapping commonalities of the region's history, geography and other factors. The Northwest Coast is the coastal region of the Pacific Northwest, the Northwest Plateau is the inland region; the term "Pacific Northwest" should not be confused with the Northwest Territory or the Northwest Territories of Canada. The region's largest metropolitan areas are Greater Seattle, with 3.8 million people.
A key aspect of the Pacific Northwest is the US–Canada international border, which the United States and the United Kingdom established at a time when the region's inhabitants were composed of indigenous peoples. The border—in two sections, along the 49th parallel south of British Columbia and the Alaska Panhandle west of northern British Columbia—has had a powerful effect on the region. According to Canadian historian Ken Coates, the border has not influenced the Pacific Northwest—rather, "the region's history and character have been determined by the boundary". Definitions of the Pacific Northwest region vary, Pacific Northwesterners do not agree on the exact boundary; the most common conception includes the U. S. states of Idaho and Washington and the Canadian province of British Columbia. Broader definitions of the region have included the U. S. states of Alaska and parts of the states of California and Wyoming, the Canadian territory of the Yukon. Definitions based on the historic Oregon Country reach east to the Continental Divide, thus including all of Idaho and parts of western Montana and western Wyoming.
Sometimes, the Pacific Northwest is defined as being the Northwestern United States excluding Canada. Note that these types of definitions are made by government agencies whose scope is limited to the United States; the Pacific Northwest has been occupied by a diverse array of indigenous peoples for millennia. The Pacific Coast is seen by some scholars as a major coastal migration route in the settlement of the Americas by late Pleistocene peoples moving from northeast Asia into the Americas; the coastal migration hypothesis has been bolstered by findings such as the report that the sediments in the Port Eliza Cave on Vancouver Island indicate the possibility of survivable climate as far back as 16 kya in the area, while the continental ice sheets were nearing their maximum extent. Other evidence for human occupation dating back as much as 14.5 kya is emerging from Paisley Caves in south-central Oregon. However, despite such research, the coastal migration hypothesis is still subject to considerable debate.
Due in part to the richness of Pacific Northwest Coast and river fisheries, some of the indigenous peoples developed complex sedentary societies, while remaining hunter-gatherers. The Pacific Northwest Coast is one of the few places where politically complex hunter-gatherers evolved and survived to historic contacts, therefore has been vital for anthropologists and archaeologists seeking to understand how complex hunter and gatherer societies function; when Europeans first arrived on the Northwest Coast, they found one of the world's most complex hunting and fishing societies, with large sedentary villages, large houses, systems of social rank and prestige, extensive trade networks, many other factors more associated with societies based on domesticated agriculture. In the interior of the Pacific Northwest, the indigenous peoples, at the time of European contact, had a diversity of cultures and societies; some areas were home to egalitarian societies. Others along major rivers such as the Columbia and Fraser, had complex, sedentary societies rivaling those of the coast.
In British Columbia and Southeast Alaska, the Tlingit and Haida erected large and elaborately carved totem poles that have become iconic of Pacific Northwest artistic traditions. Throughout the Pacific Northwest, thousands of indigenous people live, some continue to practice their rich cultural traditions, "organizing their societies around cedar and salmon". In 1579 the British captain and erstwhile privateer Francis Drake sailed up the west coast of North America as far as Oregon before returning south to land and make ship repairs. At this landing site near present-day San Francisco, Drake made a symbolic claim of the region for England, naming it New Albion. Juan de Fuca, a Greek captain sailing for the Crown of Spain found the Strait of Juan de Fuca around 1592; the strait was whether he discovered it or not has long been questioned. During the early 1740s, Imperial Russia sent the Dane Vitus Bering to the region. By the late 18th century and into the mid-19th century, Russian settlers had established several posts and communities on the northeast Pacific coast reaching a
A syllabary is a set of written symbols that represent the syllables or moras which make up words. A symbol in a syllabary, called a syllabogram represents an consonant sound followed by a vowel sound —that is, a CV or V syllable—but other phonographic mappings such as CVC, CV- tone, C are found in syllabaries. A writing system using a syllabary is complete when it covers all syllables in the corresponding spoken language without requiring complex orthographic / graphemic rules, like implicit codas silent vowels or echo vowels; this loosely corresponds to shallow orthographies in alphabetic writing systems. True syllabograms are those that encompass all parts of a syllable, i.e. initial onset, medial nucleus and final coda, but since onset and coda are optional in at least some languages, there are middle, start and full true syllabograms. Most syllabaries only feature one or two kinds of syllabograms and form other syllables by graphemic rules. Syllabograms, hence syllabaries, are pure, analytic or arbitrary if they do not share graphic similarities that correspond to phonic similarities, e.g. the symbol for ka does not resemble in any predictable way the symbol for ki, nor the symbol for a.
Otherwise they are synthetic, if they vary by onset, nucleus or coda, or systematic, if they vary by all of them. Some scholars, e.g. Daniels, reserve the general term for analytic syllabaries and invent other terms as necessary; some system provides katakana language conversion. Languages that use syllabic writing include Japanese, Vai, the Yi languages of eastern Asia, the English-based creole language Ndyuka, Shaozhou Tuhua, the ancient language Mycenaean Greek. In addition, the undecoded Cretan Linear A is believed by some to be a syllabic script, though this is not proven. Chinese characters, the cuneiform script used for Sumerian and other languages, the former Maya script are syllabic in nature, although based on logograms, they are therefore sometimes referred to as logosyllabic. The contemporary Japanese language uses two syllabaries together called kana, namely hiragana and katakana, which were developed around 700; because Japanese uses CV syllables, a syllabary is well suited to write the language.
As in many syllabaries, vowel sequences and final consonants are written with separate glyphs, so that both atta and kaita are written with three kana: あった and かいた. It is therefore sometimes called a moraic writing system. Languages that use syllabaries today tend to have simple phonotactics, with a predominance of monomoraic syllables. For example, the modern Yi script is used to write languages that have no diphthongs or syllable codas. Few syllabaries have glyphs for syllables that are not monomoraic, those that once did have simplified over time to eliminate that complexity. For example, the Vai syllabary had separate glyphs for syllables ending in a coda, a long vowel, or a diphthong, though not enough glyphs to distinguish all CV combinations; the modern script has been expanded to cover all moras, but at the same time reduced to exclude all other syllables. Bimoraic syllables are now written with two letters, as in Japanese: diphthongs are written with the help of V or hV glyphs, the nasal coda is written with the glyph for ŋ, which can form a syllable of its own in Vai.
In Linear B, used to transcribe Mycenaean Greek, a language with complex syllables, complex consonant onsets were either written with two glyphs or simplified to one, while codas were ignored, e.g. ko-no-so for Κνωσός Knōsos, pe-ma for σπέρμα sperma. The Cherokee syllabary uses dummy vowels for coda consonants, but has a segmental grapheme for /s/, which can be used both as a coda and in an initial /sC/ consonant cluster; the languages of India and Southeast Asia, as well as the Ethiopian Semitic languages, have a type of alphabet called an abugida or alphasyllabary. In these scripts, unlike in pure syllabaries, syllables starting with the same consonant are expressed with graphemes based in a regular way on a common graphical element; each character representing a syllable consists of several elements which designate the individual sounds of that syllable. In the 19th century these systems were called syllabics, a term which has survived in the name of Canadian Aboriginal syllabics. In a true syllabary there may be graphic similarity between characters that share a common consonant or vowel sound, but it is not systematic or close to regular.
For example, the characters for'ke','ka', and'ko' in Japanese hiragana have no similarity to indicate their common "k" sound. Compare this with Devanagari, an abugida, where the characters for'ke','ka' and'ko' are के, का and को with क indicating their common "k" sound. English, along with many other Indo-European languages like German and Russian, allows for complex syllable structures, making it cumbersome to write English words with a syllabary. A "pure" syllabary would require a separate glyph for every syllable in English, thus one would need separate symbols for "bag", "beg", "big", "bog", "bug", "bad", "bed", "bid", "bod", "bud", "bead", "bide", "bode", etc. Since English has well over 10,000 different possibilities for individual syllables, a s
The Ojibwe, Chippewa, or Saulteaux are an Anishinaabe people of Canada and the United States. They are one of the most numerous indigenous peoples north of the Rio Grande. In Canada, they are the second-largest First Nations population, surpassed only by the Cree. In the United States, they have the fifth-largest population among Native American peoples, surpassed in number only by the Navajo, Cherokee and Sioux; the Ojibwe people traditionally speak the Ojibwe language, a branch of the Algonquian language family. They are part of the Council of Three Fires and the Anishinaabeg, which include the Algonquin, Oji-Cree and the Potawatomi. Through the Saulteaux branch, they were a part of the Iron Confederacy, joining the Cree and Metis; the majority of the Ojibwe people live in Canada. There are 77,940 mainline Ojibwe, they live from western Quebec to eastern British Columbia. As of 2010, Ojibwe in the US census population is 170,742; the Ojibwe are known for their birch bark canoes, birch bark scrolls and trade in copper, as well as their cultivation of wild rice and Maple syrup.
Their Midewiwin Society is well respected as the keeper of detailed and complex scrolls of events, oral history, maps, stories and mathematics. The Ojibwe people underwent colonization by Settler-Canadians, they signed treaties with settler leaders, many European settlers soon inhabited the Ojibwe ancestral lands. The exonym for this Anishinaabe group is Ojibwe; this name is anglicized as "Ojibwa" or "Ojibway". The name "Chippewa" is an alternative anglicization. Although many variations exist in literature, "Chippewa" is more common in the United States, "Ojibway" predominates in Canada, but both terms are used in each country. In many Ojibwe communities throughout Canada and the U. S. since the late 20th century, more members have been using the generalized name Anishinaabe. The exact meaning of the name Ojibwe is not known; some 19th century sources say this name described a method of ritual torture that the Ojibwe applied to enemies. Ozhibii'iwe, meaning "those who keep records ", referring to their form of pictorial writing, pictographs used in Midewiwin sacred rites.
Because many Ojibwe were located around the outlet of Lake Superior, which the French colonists called Sault Ste. Marie for its rapids, the early Canadian settlers referred to the Ojibwe as Saulteurs. Ojibwe who subsequently moved to the prairie provinces of Canada have retained the name Saulteaux; this is disputed. Ojibwe who were located along the Mississagi River and made their way to southern Ontario are known as the Mississaugas; the Ojibwe language is known as Anishinaabemowin or Ojibwemowin, is still spoken, although the number of fluent speakers has declined sharply. Today, most of the language's fluent speakers are elders. Since the early 21st century, there is a growing movement to revitalize the language, restore its strength as a central part of Ojibwe culture; the language belongs to the Algonquian linguistic group, is descended from Proto-Algonquian. Its sister languages include Blackfoot, Cree, Menominee and Shawnee among the northern Plains tribes. Anishinaabemowin is referred to as a "Central Algonquian" language.
Ojibwemowin is the fourth-most spoken Native language in North America after Navajo and Inuktitut. Many decades of fur trading with the French established the language as one of the key trade languages of the Great Lakes and the northern Great Plains; the popularity of the epic poem The Song of Hiawatha, written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in 1855, publicized the Ojibwe culture. The epic contains many toponyms. According to Ojibwe oral history and from recordings in birch bark scrolls, the Ojibwe originated from the mouth of the St. Lawrence River on the Atlantic coast of what is now Quebec, they traded across the continent for thousands of years as they migrated, knew of the canoe routes to move north, west to east, south in the Americas. The identification of the Ojibwe as a culture or people may have occurred in response to contact with Europeans; the Europeans tried to identify those they encountered. According to Ojibwe oral history, seven great miigis beings appeared to them in the Waabanakiing to teach them the mide way of life.
One of the seven great miigis beings was too spiritually powerful and killed the people in the Waabanakiing when they were in its presence. The six great miigis beings remained to teach; the six great miigis beings established doodem for people in the east, symbolized by animal, fish or bird species. The five original Anishinaabe doodem were the Wawaazisii, Aan'aawenh and Moozoonsii these six miigis beings returned into the ocean as well. If the seventh miigis being had stayed
In the history of art, prehistoric art is all art produced in preliterate, prehistorical cultures beginning somewhere in late geological history, continuing until that culture either develops writing or other methods of record-keeping, or makes significant contact with another culture that has, that makes some record of major historical events. At this point ancient art begins, for the older literate cultures; the end-date for what is covered by the term thus varies between different parts of the world. The earliest human artifacts showing evidence of workmanship with an artistic purpose are the subject of some debate, it is clear that such workmanship existed by 40,000 years ago in the Upper Paleolithic era, although it is quite possible that it began earlier. In September 2018, scientists reported the discovery of the earliest known drawing by Homo sapiens, estimated to be 73,000 years old, much earlier than the 43,000 years old artifacts understood to be the earliest known modern human drawings found previously.
Engraved shells created by Homo erectus dating as far back as 500,000 years ago have been found, although experts disagree on whether these engravings can be properly classified as ‘art’. From the Upper Palaeolithic through to the Mesolithic, cave paintings and portable art such as figurines and beads predominated, with decorative figured workings seen on some utilitarian objects. In the Neolithic evidence of early pottery appeared, as did sculpture and the construction of megaliths. Early rock art first appeared during this period; the advent of metalworking in the Bronze Age brought additional media available for use in making art, an increase in stylistic diversity, the creation of objects that did not have any obvious function other than art. It saw the development in some areas of artisans, a class of people specializing in the production of art, as well as early writing systems. By the Iron Age, civilizations with writing had arisen from Ancient Egypt to Ancient China. Many indigenous peoples from around the world continued to produce artistic works distinctive to their geographic area and culture, until exploration and commerce brought record-keeping methods to them.
Some cultures, notably the Maya civilization, independently developed writing during the time they flourished, later lost. These cultures may be classified as prehistoric if their writing systems have not been deciphered; the earliest undisputed art originated with the Aurignacian archaeological culture in the Upper Paleolithic. However, there is some evidence that the preference for the aesthetic emerged in the Middle Paleolithic, from 100,000 to 50,000 years ago; some archaeologists have interpreted certain Middle Paleolithic artifacts as early examples of artistic expression. The symmetry of artifacts, evidence of attention to the detail of tool shape, has led some investigators to conceive of Acheulean hand axes and laurel points as having been produced with a degree of artistic expression. A zig-zag etching made with a shark tooth on a freshwater clam-shell around 500,000 years ago, associated with Homo erectus, was proposed as the earliest evidence of artistic activity in 2014. There are other claims of Middle Paleolithic sculpture, dubbed the "Venus of Tan-Tan" and the "Venus of Berekhat Ram".
In 2002 in Blombos cave, situated in South Africa, stones were discovered engraved with grid or cross-hatch patterns, dated to some 70,000 years ago. This suggested to some researchers that early Homo sapiens were capable of abstraction and production of abstract art or symbolic art. Several archaeologists including Richard Klein are hesitant to accept the Blombos caves as the first example of actual art. In September 2018 the discovery in South Africa of the earliest known drawing by Homo sapiens was announced, estimated to be 73,000 years old, much earlier than the 43,000 years old artifacts understood to be the earliest known modern human drawings found previously. In November 2018, scientists reported the discovery of the oldest known figurative art painting, over 40,000 years old, of an unknown animal, in the cave of Lubang Jeriji Saléh on the Indonesian island of Borneo. One of the oldest undisputed works of figurative art were found in the Schwäbische Alb, Baden-Württemberg, Germany.
The earliest of these, the Venus figurine known as the Venus of Hohle Fels and the Lion-man figurine, date to some 40,000 years ago. Further depictional art from the Upper Palaeolithic period includes cave painting and portable art: Venus figurines like the Venus of Willendorf, as well as animal carvings like the Swimming Reindeer, Wolverine pendant of Les Eyzies, several of the objects known as bâtons de commandement. Paintings in Pettakere cave on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi are up to 40,000 years old, a similar date to the oldest European cave art, which may suggest an older common origin for this type of art in Africa. Monumental open-air art in Europe from this period includes the rock-art at Côa Valley and Mazouco in Portugal, Domingo García and Siega Verde in Spain, Rocher gravé de Fornols in France. A cave at Turobong in South Korea containing human remains has been found to contain carved deer bones and depictions of deer that may be as much as 40,000 years old. Petroglyphs of deer or reindeer found at Sokchang-ri may date to the Upper Paleolithic.
Potsherds in a style reminiscent of early Japanese work have been found at Kosan-ri on Jeju island, due to lower sea levels at the time, would have been accessible from Japan. The oldest petroglyphs are dated to approxi
Pre-Columbian art refers to the visual arts of indigenous peoples of the Caribbean, North and South Americas until the late 15th and early 16th centuries, the time period marked by Christopher Columbus' arrival in the Americas. Pre-Columbian art thrived throughout the Americas from at least 13,000 BCE to the European conquests, sometimes continued for a time afterwards. Many Pre-Columbian cultures did not have writing systems, so visual art expressed cosmologies, world views and philosophy of these cultures, as well as serving as mnemonic devices. During the period before and after European exploration and conquest of the Americas, indigenous native cultures produced a wide variety of visual arts, including painting on textiles, hides and cave surfaces, bodies faces, architectural features including interior murals, wood panels, other available surfaces. For many of these cultures, the visual arts went beyond physical appearance and served as active extensions of their owners and indices of the divine.
Artisans of the Ancient Americas drew upon a wide range of materials, creating objects that included the meanings held to be inherent to the materials. These cultures derived value from the physical qualities, rather than the imagery, of artworks, prizing aural and tactile features, the quality of workmanship, the rarity of materials. Various works of art have been discovered large distances from their location of production, indicating that many Pre-Columbian civilizations collected items from other cultures or previous cultures. Moreover, many societies used raw materials not available in the geographic location in which they were situated, suggesting difficulty of acquisition as a source of value. Many of the perishable surfaces, such as woven textiles have not been preserved, but Precolumbian painting on ceramics and rocks have survived more frequently; the Mesoamerican cultures are divided into three periods: Pre-classic Classic Post-classic. The Pre-classic period was dominated by the developed Olmec civilization, which flourished around 1200–400 BCE.
The Olmecs produced jade figurines, created heavy-featured, colossal heads, up to 2 meters high, that still stand mysteriously in the landscape. The Mesoamerican tradition of building large ceremonial centres appears to have begun under the Olmecs. During the Classic period the dominant Civilization was the Maya. Maya royalty commissioned artwork that commemorated their achievements and secured their place in time. Scenes depicting various rituals and historical events are embedded with hieroglyphic text to enable the viewer to identify the important figures and places instead of relying upon physical features that could be forgotten over time; the interpretation of the actions represented in the artwork goes hand in hand with understanding the decorative text, woven into the picture. Unlocking this hieroglyphic text is vital as it removes anonymity and mystery from the scenes and reveals detailed records of those who held power throughout the timeline of the civilization. Like the Mississippian peoples of North America such as the Choctaw and Natchez, the Maya organized themselves into large, agricultural communities.
They practised their own forms of hieroglyphic writing and advanced astronomy. Mayan art focuses on rain and fertility, expressing these images in relief and surface decoration, as well as some sculpture. Glyphs and stylized figures were used to decorate architecture such as the pyramid temple of Chichén Itzá. Murals dating from about 750 CE were discovered when the city of Bonampak was excavated in 1946; the Post-classic period was dominated by the Toltecs who made colossal, block-like sculptures such as those employed as free-standing columns at Tula, Mexico. The Mixtecs developed a style of painting known as Mixtec-Puebla, as seen in their murals and codices, in which all available space is covered by flat figures in geometric designs; the Aztec culture in Mexico produced some expressive examples of Aztec art, such as the decorated skulls of captives and stone sculpture, of which Tlazolteotl, a goddess in childbirth, is a good example. In the Andean region of South America, the Chavín civilization flourished from around 1000 BCE to 300 BCE.
The Chavín produced small-scale pottery human in shape but with animal features such as bird feet, reptilian eyes, or feline fangs. Representations of jaguar are a common theme in Chavín art; the Chavin culture is noted for the spectacular murals and carvings found its main religious site of Chavín de Huantar. Contemporary with the Chavin was the Paracas culture of the southern coast of Peru, most noted today for their elaborate textiles; these amazing productions, some of which could measure ninety feet long, were used for as burial wraps for Paracas mummy bundles. Paracas art was influenced by the Chavín cult, the two styles share many common motifs. On the south coast, the Paracas were succeeded by a flowering of artistic production around the Nazca river valley; the Nazca period is divided into eight ceramic phases, each one depicting abstract animal and human motifs. These period range from Phase 1, beginning around 200 CE, to Phase 8, which declined in the middle of the eighth century; the Nasca people are most famous for the Nazca Lines, though they are regarded as making some of the most beautiful polychrome ceramics in the Andes
The modern Olympic Games or Olympics are leading international sporting events featuring summer and winter sports competitions in which thousands of athletes from around the world participate in a variety of competitions. The Olympic Games are considered the world's foremost sports competition with more than 200 nations participating; the Olympic Games are held every four years, with the Summer and Winter Games alternating by occurring every four years but two years apart. Their creation was inspired by the ancient Olympic Games, which were held in Olympia, from the 8th century BC to the 4th century AD. Baron Pierre de Coubertin founded the International Olympic Committee in 1894, leading to the first modern Games in Athens in 1896; the IOC is the governing body of the Olympic Movement, with the Olympic Charter defining its structure and authority. The evolution of the Olympic Movement during the 20th and 21st centuries has resulted in several changes to the Olympic Games; some of these adjustments include the creation of the Winter Olympic Games for snow and ice sports, the Paralympic Games for athletes with a disability, the Youth Olympic Games for athletes aged 14 to 18, the five Continental games, the World Games for sports that are not contested in the Olympic Games.
The Deaflympics and Special Olympics are endorsed by the IOC. The IOC has had to adapt to a variety of economic and technological advancements; the abuse of amateur rules by the Eastern Bloc nations prompted the IOC to shift away from pure amateurism, as envisioned by Coubertin, to allowing participation of professional athletes. The growing importance of mass media created the issue of corporate sponsorship and commercialisation of the Games. World wars led to the cancellation of the 1916, 1940, 1944 Games. Large boycotts during the Cold War limited participation in the 1980 and 1984 Games; the Olympic Movement consists of international sports federations, National Olympic Committees, organising committees for each specific Olympic Games. As the decision-making body, the IOC is responsible for choosing the host city for each Games, organises and funds the Games according to the Olympic Charter; the IOC determines the Olympic programme, consisting of the sports to be contested at the Games. There are several Olympic rituals and symbols, such as the Olympic flag and torch, as well as the opening and closing ceremonies.
Over 13,000 athletes compete at the Summer and Winter Olympic Games in 33 different sports and nearly 400 events. The first and third-place finishers in each event receive Olympic medals: gold and bronze, respectively; the Games have grown so much. This growth has created numerous challenges and controversies, including boycotts, bribery, a terrorist attack in 1972; every two years the Olympics and its media exposure provide athletes with the chance to attain national and sometimes international fame. The Games constitute an opportunity for the host city and country to showcase themselves to the world; the Ancient Olympic Games were religious and athletic festivals held every four years at the sanctuary of Zeus in Olympia, Greece. Competition was among representatives of several kingdoms of Ancient Greece; these Games featured athletic but combat sports such as wrestling and the pankration and chariot racing events. It has been written that during the Games, all conflicts among the participating city-states were postponed until the Games were finished.
This cessation of hostilities was known as truce. This idea is a modern myth; the truce did allow those religious pilgrims who were travelling to Olympia to pass through warring territories unmolested because they were protected by Zeus. The origin of the Olympics is shrouded in legend. According to legend, it was Heracles who first called the Games "Olympic" and established the custom of holding them every four years; the myth continues that after Heracles completed his twelve labours, he built the Olympic Stadium as an honour to Zeus. Following its completion, he walked in a straight line for 200 steps and called this distance a "stadion", which became a unit of distance; the most accepted inception date for the Ancient Olympics is 776 BC. The Ancient Games featured running events, a pentathlon, wrestling and equestrian events. Tradition has it that a cook from the city of Elis, was the first Olympic champion; the Olympics were of fundamental religious importance, featuring sporting events alongside ritual sacrifices honouring both Zeus and Pelops, divine hero and mythical king of Olympia.
Pelops was famous for his chariot race with King Oenomaus of Pisatis. The winners of the events were immortalised in poems and statues; the Games were held every four years, this period, known as an Olympiad, was used by Greeks as one of their units of time measurement. The Games were part of a cycle known as the Panhellenic Games, which included the Pythian Games, the Nemean Games, the Isthmian Games; the Olympic Games reached their zenith in the 6th and 5th centuries BC, but gradually declined in importance as the Romans gained power and influence in Gr