Pre-Counquest Americas Dbq

Topics: Mesoamerica, Mexico, Sacrifice Pages: 3 (851 words) Published: February 8, 2013
Pre-conquest Americas
Pre-conquest Americas was a intricate period before the Europeans arrived and colonized it. Before the conquest of the Americas it's safe to say everything during this period was based on religion; a strong respect and obedience to their gods, an imperative social structure, and a hefty tributary system. It relied and thrived on these main systems. Without their gods they had no meaning, without their social structure they were humans divided amongst themselves, without their tributary system they had anarchy and loss of power. The question is, how did all these aspects tie into each other?

Prior to 1492, the Americas didn't have to live to up to any certain religions, they were polytheistic, they believed in many gods. One of these gods was Popol Vuh. He was the ultimate diety. Passage 1 explains why corn was so important to the Mesoamericans, Mayans in particular. Popo helped create the first humans from corn. The inhabitants were very loyal and obedient to the gods. Huitzilopochtli was a god of war, he was ultimately praised for sacrifice. He helped Mexicans find their native capital in Central Mexico. For this he was vastly honored. Mexicans have built huge temples to honor this god of war and sacrifice. From my knowledge I remember that these pyramids/temples consisted of huge sacrifices occurring over a short span of days. This just emphasizes the importance that gods had on pre-conquest Mesoamericans. Life revolved around the gods. We can also see the important role of sacrifice in religion in the 4th and final passage. "..communicated that human sacrifice sustained the gods and maintained cosmic order." Even with everything happening around the, pleasing the gods was always a main priority that still happens to this day.

Mesoamericans had a strong social structure. It's safe to say that they were a patriarchal society. Man was always in charge and women were inferior. Pride was very important in this aspect. This is shown in...
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