The Maya and Aztec civilizations are considered the most sophisticated of numerous ancient civilizations in North and Central America. But there was one more magnificent civilization in the region, the Olmec, who flourished from around 1500 BC to 400 BC.
At the beginning of the 19th century, excavations unearthed various human-like items that did not belong to the Maya or Aztec cultures. These figurines were the first indication of the Olmecs’ existence.
The Aztec language gives us Olmec, which means “rubber people.” The Olmecs were most likely involved in the harvesting and processing of rubber, which they used to make their shoes. However, no wearer of rubber sandals or remnants of an Olmec skeleton has been discovered so far.
However, there are numerous artifacts today. The massive stone heads are particularly striking.
Although the first enormous head was discovered in 1862, it was not fully excavated until 1925. It stood 2 meters tall and had a diameter of 5 meters.
The heads were massive, with the largest weighing in at around 20 tonnes.
The earliest Olmec traces, dating from the third millennium BC, have been discovered in the La Venta area. The ancient Indians conquered river estuaries, gradually planted maize and beans, and settled in small villages.
According to scholars, San Lorenzo was the Olmec capital, and life there was thriving for 1,500 years before the modern age began. The old city is built on a natural plateau whose slopes were artificially smoothed under terraces where buildings were built. Archaeologists estimate that the city had a population of about 5000 people.
Villages are also uncovered in Tres Zapotes and Sin Cabezas (meaning “headless”).
The Olmec culture is portrayed by pyramids, mosaics, carved steles, jade, and clay figurines, in addition to the heads, by which one can determine the beliefs of these ancient people. And the jaguar god was the most important thing they had: statues, masks, and other depictions of this animal can be seen all over the place.
Furthermore, scientists believe the Olmecs invented the Mesoamerican ballgame and committed human sacrifice.
Despite the large number of items uncovered, archaeologists have no idea where this culture originated. There are no traces of its origins or stages of growth, little is known about the social organization, and it is unclear which ethnic group they belong
The Ancient Olmecs believed they had divine assistance. According to specific stories, “beings from the clouds” assisted them in constructing numerous spectacular structures. “Nosoobi” refers to those entities or ancient aliens.
There are some puzzles in general. However, this ancient civilization’s disappearance is likewise a mystery just as mysterious as its appearance. According to rational scientists, crop failures and frequent volcanic eruptions killed the culture. On the other hand, Romantics are sure: the Olmecs just finished a mission on this planet and moved on.