Oxted & District History Society - Talk
Oxted & District History Society
 
 

James Stewart gave an illustrated lecture to the Oxted & District History Society on ‘City Builders of Central America’.


The city states of Central America covered a large area of what is now Mexico and adjoining areas.  The cities each covered several square miles.  Surrounding the cities were agricultural areas providing food and most of the Yucatan peninsula was irrigated by a system of canals.  Many vegetables and fruits were cultivated and there were chocolate drinks, animals and turkeys feeding the 25 million people of the cities and surrounding areas.


Massive pyramids were built in the cities.  Human sacrifice was not widespread.  There were many languages and scripts, only some of which have been translated.  The Mayans developed mathematics, discovered zero and accurately dated years for Earth, Venus, Mars as well as lunar months.  On Monte Alban there was a medical teaching centre and an observatory.


The cities and civilizations were decimated by the Spanish invaders from 1519.  Temples and idols were destroyed and manuscripts burnt.  By 1605 the population had been reduced from 25 million to 1 million people as a result of the destruction and European diseases.  Much excavation and deciphering of scripts remains to be done.

 

City Builders of Central America by Dr. James Stewart,