Who Were the Olmec Heads in Mesoamerica Modeled After?

Who Were the Olmec Heads in Mesoamerica Modeled After?

This is NaNoWriMo research for Day 3. Read about Day two here.

So continuing on from yesterday and drawing from the same book, let’s talk a bit about the Olmec.

What was the purpose of leaving giant ‘Olmec heads’ and statues depicting themselves everywhere they went? In the book I am currently reading, the author has a different answer for this.

His argument stems from a place of spirituality, dubbed as ‘religion’ by the researcher.

These remnants of the civilization we see carved in stone may actually be tributes to their Gods – so to speak. Meaning, the depictions of Gods are carved in stone, and not actually the Olmec people themselves.

Unless there is a case where a ruler simply sat to have his likeness etched into our collective story (or ‘his-story’).

I’d like to believe that it was a mix of both. Similar to the Nazca Lines, it’s a way of saying “I am here”. A way to leave traces, and maybe even serving as borderlines or dominions of certain clans or peoples. A sort of territorial marker, if you will.

If an enemy tribe or clan wandered too close to their borders, they would know because they were faced with the Gods. If you trespassed any further, it would be seen as a disrespect to the deity watching over the land, and immediate grounds for swift, severe expulsion.

But, what do you think?

What was the purpose of the gigantic Olmec heads carved in stone across Mesoamerica? Does this strike any similarities to civilizations you know of around the world? Were they all connected through trade at one point in time?

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below!


⊙ Remember, this world is a shadow of the real one.

Stories From the New World

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