In Mesoamerican folk religion, a nagual or nahual is a human being who has the power to transform, shapeshift beyond the premisses of the human form. There is a widespread superstition that in order to become a nagual you have to do a pact with the devil and offer him something special; such a nagual is believed to use their powers for evil according to their personality. Specific beliefs vary. Nagualism is linked with pre-Columbian shamanistic practices through Preclassic Olmec depictions which are interpreted as human beings transforming themselves into animals; the system is linked with the Mesoamerican calendrical system, used for divination rituals. The birth date determines if a person will be a nagual. Mesoamerican belief in tonalism, wherein every person has an animal counterpart to which his life force is linked, is part of the definition of nagualism. In English the word is translated as "transforming witch", but translations without the negative connotations of the word witch would be "transforming trickster" or "shape shifter".
The word nagual derives from the Nahuatl word nahuālli, an indigenous religious practitioner, identified by the Spanish as a'magician'. The nagual is acquired along with the other characteristics of a person's birth day at birth; each day is associated with an animal which has weak aspects. A person born on "The Dog Day" would have both weak ` Dog' aspects. In Nahuatl the word tonalli was used to refer both to a day and to the animal associated with that day; the nagual is different, where the tonal is the day spirit proper, the nagual is the spirit familiar of the day. It is probable that the tonal represents the daytime aspect and the nagual the nighttime aspect of the tonalli,'the things of the day'; because practitioners of powerful magic were born on certain days related to animals with a strong or harmful aspect they would have specific tonals such as the jaguar or puma. In Aztec mythology the God Tezcatlipoca was the protector of nagualism, because his tonal was the jaguar and he governed the distribution of wealth.
In modern rural Mexico, nagual is sometimes synonymous with brujo: one, able to shapeshift into an animal at night, drink blood from human victims, steal property, cause disease, the like. In some indigenous communities the position of nagual is integrated into the religious hierarchy; the community knows, a nagual, tolerating and respecting them. Nagualli are hired to remove curses cast by other nagualli. In other communities the accusation of nagualism may result in violent attacks by the community towards the accused; the Western study of Nagualism was initiated by archaeologist and ethnologist Daniel Garrison Brinton who published Nagualism: A Study in Native-American Folklore and History, which chronicled historical interpretations of the word and those who practiced Nagualism in Mexico in 1894. He identified various beliefs associated with nagualism in some modern Mexican communities such as the Mixe, the Nahua, the Zapotec and the Mixtec. Subsequently, many studies have described Nagualism in different Mesoamerican cultures such as the Zoques and the Jakaltek, K'iche', Q'eqchi', Tzeltal Maya.
Among the Jacaltec, naguals reinforce indigenism by punishing those who collaborate with non-indigenous'ladinos. In 1955, Gustavo Correa, suggested Nagualism is not pre-Columbian, arguing that it was wholly imported from Europe, where he compared it to the medieval belief in werewolves. However, shapeshifting folklore is far from limited to Europe, nor is it limited to the Middle Ages; the werewolf is far from the only, or the earliest, form of folklorical therianthropy. A solid consensus of authors and curators today interpret pre-Columbian art as expressing a belief in therianthropic shapeshifting citing hallucinogenic drugs as the root of the Mesoamerican and Desert Southwest shapeshifter folktales. Kaplan concludes that, in Oaxaca, the belief in naguals as evil shape shifting witches is common in both indigenous and mestizo populations. According to Kaplan, the belief in animal spirit companions is indigenous; these is certain for some groups and communities, but for others, as the Mixes, Triquis or Tacuates, those who can control their nahual or alterego are protectors of the people and the natural resources and culture of the community, revered but feared.in 1887, Sargeant Oscar Francisco Gimenez Nava was found to be one of this witches, some villagers says they saw him transfrom into a wolf they chased after him but witness say he was way too fast to overrun him and he escaped.
The term nagual was popularized in books by author Carlos Castaneda, although he had come up with a different meaning for the term, with little relation to the Nahuatl definition. Brinton, Daniel G.. Nagualism: A Study in Native American Folk-lore and History. Philadelphia: MacCalla & Company, Printers. Correa, Gustavo. "El espiritu del mal en Guatemala". Nativism and Syncretism. Tulane University: Middle American Research Institute Publications. 19: 37–104. Hoag Mulryan, Lenore. Nagual in the Garden: Fantastic Animals in Mexican Ceramics. Los Angeles: Fowler Museum. ISBN 978-0-930741-49-5. Kaplan, Lucille. "Tonal and Nagual in Coastal Oaxaca". Journal
International Standard Serial Number
An International Standard Serial Number is an eight-digit serial number used to uniquely identify a serial publication, such as a magazine. The ISSN is helpful in distinguishing between serials with the same title. ISSN are used in ordering, interlibrary loans, other practices in connection with serial literature; the ISSN system was first drafted as an International Organization for Standardization international standard in 1971 and published as ISO 3297 in 1975. ISO subcommittee TC 46/SC 9 is responsible for maintaining the standard; when a serial with the same content is published in more than one media type, a different ISSN is assigned to each media type. For example, many serials are published both in electronic media; the ISSN system refers to these types as electronic ISSN, respectively. Conversely, as defined in ISO 3297:2007, every serial in the ISSN system is assigned a linking ISSN the same as the ISSN assigned to the serial in its first published medium, which links together all ISSNs assigned to the serial in every medium.
The format of the ISSN is an eight digit code, divided by a hyphen into two four-digit numbers. As an integer number, it can be represented by the first seven digits; the last code digit, which may be 0-9 or an X, is a check digit. Formally, the general form of the ISSN code can be expressed as follows: NNNN-NNNC where N is in the set, a digit character, C is in; the ISSN of the journal Hearing Research, for example, is 0378-5955, where the final 5 is the check digit, C=5. To calculate the check digit, the following algorithm may be used: Calculate the sum of the first seven digits of the ISSN multiplied by its position in the number, counting from the right—that is, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, respectively: 0 ⋅ 8 + 3 ⋅ 7 + 7 ⋅ 6 + 8 ⋅ 5 + 5 ⋅ 4 + 9 ⋅ 3 + 5 ⋅ 2 = 0 + 21 + 42 + 40 + 20 + 27 + 10 = 160 The modulus 11 of this sum is calculated. For calculations, an upper case X in the check digit position indicates a check digit of 10. To confirm the check digit, calculate the sum of all eight digits of the ISSN multiplied by its position in the number, counting from the right.
The modulus 11 of the sum must be 0. There is an online ISSN checker. ISSN codes are assigned by a network of ISSN National Centres located at national libraries and coordinated by the ISSN International Centre based in Paris; the International Centre is an intergovernmental organization created in 1974 through an agreement between UNESCO and the French government. The International Centre maintains a database of all ISSNs assigned worldwide, the ISDS Register otherwise known as the ISSN Register. At the end of 2016, the ISSN Register contained records for 1,943,572 items. ISSN and ISBN codes are similar in concept. An ISBN might be assigned for particular issues of a serial, in addition to the ISSN code for the serial as a whole. An ISSN, unlike the ISBN code, is an anonymous identifier associated with a serial title, containing no information as to the publisher or its location. For this reason a new ISSN is assigned to a serial each time it undergoes a major title change. Since the ISSN applies to an entire serial a new identifier, the Serial Item and Contribution Identifier, was built on top of it to allow references to specific volumes, articles, or other identifiable components.
Separate ISSNs are needed for serials in different media. Thus, the print and electronic media versions of a serial need separate ISSNs. A CD-ROM version and a web version of a serial require different ISSNs since two different media are involved. However, the same ISSN can be used for different file formats of the same online serial; this "media-oriented identification" of serials made sense in the 1970s. In the 1990s and onward, with personal computers, better screens, the Web, it makes sense to consider only content, independent of media; this "content-oriented identification" of serials was a repressed demand during a decade, but no ISSN update or initiative occurred. A natural extension for ISSN, the unique-identification of the articles in the serials, was the main demand application. An alternative serials' contents model arrived with the indecs Content Model and its application, the digital object identifier, as ISSN-independent initiative, consolidated in the 2000s. Only in 2007, ISSN-L was defined in the
Pochteca were professional, long-distance traveling merchants in the Aztec Empire. They were a small, but important class as they not only facilitated commerce, but communicated vital information across the empire and beyond its borders; the trade or commerce was referred to as pochtecayotl. The pochteca traveled outside the empire to trade with neighboring lands throughout Mesoamerica; because of their extensive travel and knowledge of the empire, pochteca were employed as spies. The subject of Book 9 of the Florentine Codex, compiled by Bernardino de Sahagún, is the pochteca. Pochteca occupied a high status below the noble class; the pochteca were responsible for providing the materials that the noble class used to display their wealth. These materials were obtained from foreign sources; the pochteca acted as agents for the nobility by selling the surplus tribute, bestowed on the noble and warrior elite and sourcing rare goods or luxury items. The pochteca traded the excess tribute in the marketplace or carried it to other areas to exchange for trade goods.
Due to the success of the pochteca, many of these merchants became as wealthy as the noble class, but were obligated to hide this wealth from the public. Trading expeditions left their districts late in the evening, their wealth was only revealed within their private guildhalls. Although politically and economically powerful, the pochteca strove to avoid undue attention; the merchants followed their own laws in their own calpulli, venerating their god, Yacatecuhtli, "The Lord Who Guides", an aspect of Quetzalcoatl. The merchants were elevated to the rank of the warriors of the military orders; the pochteca were organized into powerful guilds, each based in one of the urban centers of the Valley of México: The markets were part of a complex interlocking system. In the Valley there were four levels of market: The great market of Tlatelolco; the markets of Texcoco and Xochimilco. The Macuiltianquiztli - every five-days markets of the city-states Huitzilopocho, Cuautitlán, Mixcoac, Huexotla, Cóatlichan and Chalco.
The markets of the smaller towns and villages. Some of the cities were famous for specialized markets: Texcoco sold ceramics and clothing. Acolman specialized in dogs and food animals. Tepepulco sold birds, important for their feathers. Azcapotzalco controlled all major markets and trade routes; the highest official of the pochteca in Tenochtitlán was the Pochtecatlailotlac, the Merchant-Arbiter who sat as one of the judges in the Tlacxitlan, the highest court of law. Each of these cities included a merchant district and a market, the tianquiztli, though the greatest market was the tianquizco in Tlatelolco, the fifth campan of Tenochtitlán. Tlatelolco included seven calpulli inhabited by the pochteca: Pochtlan, Atlauhco, Tepetitlan and Tzommolco; each of the pochteca calpulli were governed by the Pochtecatlatoque – the Merchant Speakers or Leaders. Those of the Pochtlan and Acxotlan districts had special titles: The Tlailotlac of Pochtlan was the arbiter in mercantile affairs, overseeing the commerce of the Pochteca Teucnehnenqueh, the ‘travelling lords’.
Elderly experienced merchants, the Pochtecahuehuetqueh, helped him manage the mercantile concerns of the district. The Acxoteca of Acxotlan was the Merchant-General of the Naualoztomeca, the ‘disguised merchants’; each of the Pochtecatlatoque were aided by the pochtecatlatoque. The pochtecatlatoque were the elder of the pochteca, were no longer travelers, but rather acted as administrators, overseeing young pochteca and administering the marketplace; the volume of trade passing through the great tianquizco of Tlatelolco was unsurpassed in Mesoamerica. Some sources have estimated; the Spanish conquerors commented on the impressive nature of the local markets in the 15th century. The Mexica market of Tlatelolco was the largest in all the Americas and said to be superior to those in Europe, it served not to distribute goods but as the great clearing house of the Empire. Such was the organisation required to manage this massive entrepreneurial center that the Aztec state founded special institutions and officials to oversee it.
The Pochtecatlailotlac, the ‘first of the merchants’ was the effective governor of Tlatelolco, answering to the Huey Tlatoani and accounted a magistrate of the Teuctlahtohqueh, the imperial judges. The Tianquizpan Tlayacanqui, the Marketplace Judges, oversaw the enactment of pochteca laws and sentenced any thieves caught within the confines of the tianquizco; the Pochteca Tlahtocan commercial court had three levels and between three and five judges would sit in court each market day. The omnipresent Tianquiztlacanqui administered the day-to-day running of the market, checking for compliance with the laws and looking out for fraudulent dealing, they ensured the payment of the imperial trade tax, the pochtecatequitl, enforced on all sales. The professional merchants were classified into the following roles: The importers: pochteca and oztomeca; the wholesalers, the tlaquixtiani. The retailers, the tlanecuilo; the pochteca were divided into the following types: The Pochteca Teucnehnenqueh, the pochteca trading on behalf of the nobility.
They were considered the higher rank of pochteca. The Pochteca Naualoztomeca, the ‘disguised merchants’, seeking after rare goods on their own behalf but as spies for the state. A oztomecatl was a merchant-guard or vanguard-merchant seeking out new markets and resources and goods of interest to Tenochtitlán. Senior warrior-merc
Hoa Hakananai'a is a moai housed in the British Museum in London. It was taken from Orongo, Rapa Nui in November 1868 by the crew of the British ship HMS Topaze, arrived in England in August 1869. Though small, it is considered to be typical of the island’s statue form, but distinguished by carvings added to the back, associated with the island birdman cult, it has been described as a "masterpiece" and "without a doubt, the finest example of Easter Island sculpture". The statue was identified as Hoa Hakananai'a by islanders at the time it was removed, the British crew first recording the name in the form Hoa-haka-nana-ia or Hoa-haka-nama-ia, it has been variously translated from the Rapa Nui language to mean breaking wave, surfing fellow or master wave-breaker. When recorded in 1868, Hoa Hakananai'a was standing erect, part buried inside a freestone ceremonial "house" in the ‘Orongo village at the south-western tip of the island, it faced with its back turned to the sea. It may have been made for this location, or first erected elsewhere before being moved to where it was found.
Most statues on Rapa Nui are of a reddish tuff, but Hoa Hakananai'a is made from a block of dark grey-brown flow lava. Though described as basalt, quarried near to where the statue was found, there is no record of petrological analysis to confirm this, it stands 2.42 metres high, is 96 cm across, weighs 4.2 tonnes. The base of the statue, now concealed in a modern plinth, may have been flat, subsequently narrowed, or was rough and tapering from the start. Typical of Easter Island moai, Hoa Hakananai'a features a heavy brow, blocky face with prominent nose and jutting chin, thin angled arms down the sides and hands reaching towards the stomach, near the base, it has a raised Y-shape in the centre of the chin, eyes hollowed out in a way characteristic of statues erected elsewhere on the island on ceremonial ahu platforms, long, rectangular stylised ears. A line around the base of the neck is interpreted as representing the clavicles. In its original form, the back is thought to have been plain, apart from a maro, a belt or girdle, which consists of three raised lines and a circle above, an M on a vertical line below.
Near the base are slight indications of buttocks. The top of the head is smooth and flat, could have supported a pukao, a cylindrical stone "hat". A flat round stone found near the site of the statue may have been such a hat, or, if the base was flat, a bed plate on which the statue once stood. No Easter Island statues have been scientifically dated, but statue making in general is said to have begun by at least 1000 CE, occurred between 1300 and 1500 CE. Manufacture is said to have ended by 1600 CE. Episode 70 of the 2010 BBC Radio 4 series A History of the World in 100 Objects describes the statue as being from 1000-1200 CE; the Y on the chin and the clavicles are rare on Easter Island statues, said to be late innovations. The back of the statue, between the maro and the top of the head, is covered with relief carvings added at an unknown time after the statue was made, they are similar in style to petroglyphs on the native rock around the ‘Orongo village, where they are more common than anywhere else on the island.
Either side and above the ring on the maro are two facing birdmen, stylised human figures with beaked heads said to represent frigate birds. Above these, in the centre of the statue’s head, is a smaller bird said to be a sooty tern. Either side of this is a symbol of male power and prestige. Along the edge of the left ear is a third paddle, because of its smaller size a rapa rather than an ao, on the right ear a row of four vulva symbols. Y-shaped lines drop down from the top of the head; when first seen by Europeans, the carvings were painted red against a white background. The paint was or washed off when the statue was rafted out to HMS Topaze. Precise reading of these designs varies; the birdmen are popularly interpreted as Makemake, a fertility god and chief god of the birdman cult. This cult, said to have replaced the older statue cult, was recorded by early European visitors, it involved an annual competition to retrieve the first egg laid by migrating sooty terns. The contest was held at ‘Orongo, the winning man became Makemake’s representative for the following year.
The last ceremony is thought to have been held in 1866 or 1867. After the most intensive survey of the statue to date, a more detailed interpretation of the carvings has been proposed; the new survey, which followed an as yet unpublished laser scan survey, comprised a combination of Photogrammetry and Reflectance Transformation Imaging, used to create high-resolution digital images in “two and a half” and three dimensions. This allowed several details to be clarified; the Y-shaped lines at the top of the head are the remnants of two large komari removed by the other carvings, which were added at a date. The small bird has a closed beak, not open as had been described, the foot of the left birdman has five toes, not six. There is a shallow carving below the left ear, which could be a komari or the head of an ao; the beak of the right birdman comes to a rounded end, not a long pointed tip. The short beak has been contested, in turn the origi
The Templo Mayor was the main temple of the Mexica peoples in their capital city of Tenochtitlan, now Mexico City. Its architectural style belongs to the late Postclassic period of Mesoamerica; the temple was called the Huēyi Teōcalli in the Nahuatl language. It was dedicated to Huitzilopochtli, god of war, Tlaloc, god of rain and agriculture, each of which had a shrine at the top of the pyramid with separate staircases; the spire in the center of the adjacent image was devoted to Quetzalcoatl in his form as the wind god, Ehecatl. The Great Temple devoted to Huitzilopochtli and Tlaloc, measuring 100 by 80 m at its base, dominated the Sacred Precinct. Construction of the first temple began sometime after 1325, it was rebuilt six times; the temple was destroyed by the Spanish in 1521 to make way for the new cathedral. The Zócalo, or main plaza of Mexico City today, was developed to the southwest of this archeological site, located in the block between Seminario and Justo Sierra streets; the site is part of the Historic Center of Mexico City, added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1987.
It received 801,942 visitors in 2017. After the destruction of Tenochtitlan, the Templo Mayor, like most of the rest of the city, was taken apart and the area redeveloped by new structures of the Spanish colonial city; the Temple’s exact location was forgotten. By the 20th-century, scholars had a good idea; this was based on the archeological work done at the end of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th. Leopoldo Batres did some excavation work at the end of the 19th century under the Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral because at the time, researchers thought the cathedral had been built over the ruins of the temple. In the first decades of the 20th century, Manuel Gamio found part of the southwest corner of the temple and his finds were put on public display. However, the discovery did not generate great public interest in excavating further, because the zone was an upper-class residential area. In 1933, Emilio Cuevas found part of a beam. In 1948, Hugo Moedano and Elma Estrada Balmori excavated a platform containing serpent heads and offerings.
In 1966, Eduardo Contreras and Jorge Angula excavated a chest containing offerings, which had first been explored by Gamio. The push to excavate the site did not come until late in the 20th century. On 21 February 1978, workers for the electric company were digging at a place in the city popularly known as the "island of the dogs", it was so named because it was elevated over the rest of the neighborhood and, during flooding, street dogs would congregate there. Just over two meters down, the diggers struck a pre-Hispanic monolith; this stone turned out to be a huge disk of over 3.25 meters in diameter, 30 centimeters thick and weighing 8.5 metric tons. The relief on the stone was determined to be Coyolxauhqui, Huitzilopochtli's sister, was dated to the end of the 15th century. From 1978 to 1982, specialists directed by archeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma worked on the project to excavate the Temple. Initial excavations found. Efforts coalesced into the Templo Mayor Project, authorized by presidential decree.
To excavate, 13 buildings in this area had to be demolished. Nine of these were built in the 1930s, four dated from the 19th century, had preserved colonial elements. During excavations, more than 7,000 objects were found offerings including effigies, clay pots in the image of Tlaloc, skeletons of turtles, frogs and fish; these artifacts are now housed in the Templo Mayor Museum. This museum is the result of the work done since the early 1980s to rescue and research the Templo Mayor, its Sacred Precinct, all objects associated with it; the museum exists to make all of the finds available to the public. The excavated site consists of two parts: the temple itself and labeled to show its various stages of development, along with some other associated buildings, the museum, built to house the smaller and more fragile objects. Aztec temples were expanded by building over prior ones, using the bulk of the former as a base for the latter, as rulers sought to expand the temple to reflect the growing greatness of the city of Tenochtitlan.
Therefore, digging down through this temple takes us back in time. The first temple was begun by the Aztecs the year after they founded the city, the temple was rebuilt six times. All seven stages of the Templo Mayor, except the first, have been excavated and assigned to the reigns of the emperors who were responsible for them. Construction of the first Templo Mayor began sometime after 1325; this first temple is only known through historical records, because the high water table of the old lakebed prevents excavation. According to these records, the first pyramid was built with earth and perishable wood, which may not have survived to the present time; the second temple was built during the reigns of Acamapichtli and Chimalpopoca between 1375 and 1427. The upper part of this temple has been excavated, exposing two stone shrines covered in stucco on the north side. A chacmool was uncovered as well. On the south side, there is a sacrificial stone called a sculpted face; the third temple was built between 1440 during the reign of Itzcoatl.
A staircase with eight stone standard-bearers is from t
Mesoamerican calendars are the calendrical systems devised and used by the pre-Columbian cultures of Mesoamerica. Besides keeping time, Mesoamerican calendars were used in religious observances and social rituals, such as for divination; the existence of Mesoamerican calendars is known as early as ca. 500 BCE, with the essentials appearing defined and functional. These calendars are still used today in the Guatemalan highlands, Veracruz and Chiapas, Mexico. Among the various calendar systems in use, two were central and widespread across Mesoamerica. Common to all recorded Mesoamerican cultures, the most important, was the 260-day calendar, a ritual calendar with no confirmed correlation to astronomical or agricultural cycles; the earliest Mesoamerican calendar to be developed, it was known by a variety of local terms, its named components and the glyphs used to depict them were culture-specific. However, it is clear that this calendar functioned in the same way across cultures, down through the chronological periods it was maintained.
The second of the major calendars was one representing a 365-day period approximating the tropical year, known sometimes as the "vague year". Because it was an approximation, over time the seasons and the true tropical year "wandered" with respect to this calendar, owing to the accumulation of the differences in length. There is little hard evidence to suggest that the ancient Mesoamericans used any intercalary days to bring their calendar back into alignment. However, there is evidence to show Mesoamericans were aware of this gradual shifting, which they accounted for in other ways without amending the calendar itself; these two 260- and 365-day calendars could be synchronised to generate the Calendar Round, a period of 18980 days or 52 years. The completion and observance of this Calendar Round sequence was of ritual significance to a number of Mesoamerican cultures. A third major calendar form known as the Long Count is found in the inscriptions of several Mesoamerican cultures, most famously those of the Maya civilization who developed it to its fullest extent during the Classic period.
The Long Count provided the ability to uniquely identify days over a much longer period of time, by combining a sequence of day-counts or cycles of increasing length, calculated or set from a particular date in the mythical past. Most five such higher-order cycles in a modified vigesimal count were used; the use of Mesoamerican calendrics is one of the cultural traits that Paul Kirchoff used in his original formulation to define Mesoamerica as a culture area. Therefore, the use of Mesoamerican calendars is specific to Mesoamerica and is not found outside its boundaries. In the 260-day cycle 20 day names pairs with 13 day numbers; this cycle was used for divination purposes to foretell unlucky days. The date of birth was used to give names to both humans and gods in many Mesoamerican cultures; each day sign was presided over by a god and many had associations with specific natural phenomena. The exact origin of the 260-day count is not known. One theory is that the calendar came from mathematical operations based on the numbers thirteen and twenty, which were important numbers to the Maya.
The numbers multiplied together equal 260. Another theory is; this is close to the average number of days between the first missed menstrual period and birth, unlike Naegele's rule, 40 weeks between the last menstrual period and birth. It is postulated that midwives developed the calendar to predict babies' expected birth dates. A third theory comes from understanding of astronomy and paleontology; the mesoamerican calendar originated with the Olmecs, a settlement existed at Izapa, in southeast Chiapas Mexico, before 1200 BCE. There, at a latitude of about 15° N, the Sun passes through zenith twice a year, there are 260 days between zenithal passages, gnomons, were found at this and other sites; the sacred almanac may well have been set in motion on 1359 BCE, in Izapa. In the post-classic Aztec calendar the periods of 13 days called in Spanish a trecena were important; the days of a trecena were numbered from 1 to 13. There were some exceptions, such as in the Tlapanec area where they were counted from 2 to 14.
The first day of the trecena, the god, its patron, ruled the following thirteen days. If the first day of a trecena was auspicious so were the next twelve days; this 365-day calendar corresponded was divided into 18'months' of 20 days each, plus 5'nameless' days at the end of the year. The 365 day year had no leap year; the years were given their name in much the same way as the days of the 260-day calendar, 20 names were paired with 13 numbers giving 52 different possibilities for year names In the post-classic Aztec calendar the 20 days called veintenas in Spanish and meztli, meaning moon in Nahuatl, were important. The five unlucky days were called nemontemi in Mexico. Most believe them to have come at the end of each year, but since we do not know when the year started, we cannot know for sure. We do know though, that in the Maya-area these five days were always the last days of the year; the nemontemi were seen as'the useless days' or the days that were dedicated to no
Mesoamerican chronology divides the history of prehispanic Mesoamerica into several periods: the Paleo-Indian, the Archaic, the Preclassic or Formative, the Classic, the Postclassic and Postcolonial. The periodization of Mesoamerica is based on archaeological and modern cultural anthropology research; the endeavor to create cultural histories of Mesoamerica dates to the early twentieth century, with ongoing work by archeologists, ethnohistorians and cultural anthropologists. 10,000–3500 BCE The Paleo-Indian period or era is that which spans from the first signs of human presence in the region, to the establishment of agriculture and other practices and subsistence techniques characteristic of proto-civilizations. In Mesoamerica, the termination of this phase and its transition into the succeeding Archaic period may be reckoned at between 10,000 and 8000 BCE, although this dating is approximate only and different timescales may be used between fields and sub-regions. Before 2600 BCEDuring the Archaic Era agriculture was developed in the region and permanent villages were established.
Late in this era, use of pottery and loom weaving became common, class divisions began to appear. Many of the basic technologies of Mesoamerica in terms of stone-grinding, pottery etc. were established during this period. 2000 BCE–250 CEDuring the Preclassic Era, or Formative Period, large-scale ceremonial architecture, writing and states developed. Many of the distinctive elements of Mesoamerican civilization can be traced back to this period, including the dominance of corn, the building of pyramids, human sacrifice, jaguar-worship, the complex calendar, many of the gods; the Olmec civilization developed and flourished at such sites as La Venta and San Lorenzo Tenochtitlán succeeded by the Epi-Olmec culture between 300–250 BCE. The Zapotec civilization arose in the Valley of Oaxaca, the Teotihuacan civilization arose in the Valley of Mexico, the Maya civilization began to develop in the Mirador Basin and the Epi-Olmec culture in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec expanding into Guatemala and the Yucatán Peninsula.
250–900 CEThe Classic Period was dominated by numerous independent city-states in the Maya region and featured the beginnings of political unity in central Mexico and the Yucatán. Regional differences between cultures grew more manifest; the city-state of Teotihuacan dominated the Valley of Mexico until the early 8th century, but we know little of the political structure of the region because the Teotihuacanos left no written records. The city-state of Monte Albán dominated the Valley of Oaxaca until the late Classic, leaving limited records in their undeciphered script. Sophisticated arts such as stuccowork, sculptural reliefs, mural painting and lapidary developed and spread during the Classic era. In the Maya region, under considerable military influence by Teotihuacan after the "arrival" of Siyaj K'ak' in 378 CE, numerous city states such as Tikal, Calakmul, Copán, Palenque, Cobá, Caracol reached their zeniths; each of these polities was independent, although they formed alliances and sometimes became vassal states of each other.
The main conflict during this period was between Tikal and Calakmul, who fought a series of wars over the course of more than half a millennium. Each of these states declined during the Terminal Classic and were abandoned. 900–1521 CEIn the Postclassic Period many of the great nations and cities of the Classic Era collapsed, although some continued, such as in Oaxaca and the Maya of Yucatán, such as at Chichen Itza and Uxmal. This is sometimes seen as a period of increased warfare; the Postclassic is viewed as a period of cultural decline. However, it was a time of technological advancement in architecture and weaponry. Metallurgy came into use for jewelry and some tools, with new alloys and techniques being developed in a few centuries; the Postclassic was a period of rapid movement and population growth—especially in Central Mexico post-1200—and of experimentation in governance. For instance, in Yucatán,'dual rulership' replaced the more theocratic governments of Classic times, whilst oligarchic councils operated in much of Central Mexico.
It appears that the wealthy pochteca and military orders became more powerful than was the case in Classic times. This afforded some Mesoamericans a degree of social mobility; the Toltec for a time dominated central Mexico in the 9th–10th century collapsed. The northern Maya were for a time united under Mayapan, Oaxaca was united by Mixtec rulers in the 11th–12th centuries; the Aztec Empire arose in the early 15th century and appeared to be on a path to asserting dominance over the Valley of Mexico region not seen since Teotihuacan. Spain was the first European power to contact Mesoamerica and its conquistadores and a large number of native allies conquered the Aztecs. By the 15th century, the Mayan'revival' in Yucatán and southern Guatemala and the flourishing of Aztec imperialism evidently enabled a renaissance of fine arts and science. Examples include the'Pueblan-Mexica' style in pottery, codex illumination, goldwork, the flourishing of Nahua poetry, the botanical institutes established by the Aztec elite.
1521-1821 CEThe Colonial Period was initiated with Spanish conquest, which ended the hegemony of the Aztec Empire. It was accomplished with