The End of the Olmec Civilization Two great Olmec cities are known: San Lorenzo and La Venta. Around 400 B.C. La Venta went into decline and was eventually abandoned altogether. With the fall of La Venta came the end of classic Olmec culture.
The Olmec religious practices of sacrifice, cave rituals, pilgrimages, offerings, ball-courts, pyramids and a seeming awe of mirrors, was also passed on to all subsequent civilizations in Mesoamerica until the Spanish Conquest in the 16th century CE.
Why did the Olmec civilization decline? their civilization was destroyed by either themselves or invaders.
This theory holds that the Maya derived their entire society—including their architecture and social structure— directly from the Olmec. But Inomata’s work has revealed that the Olmec is not an older civilization. In fact, Ceibal pre-dates La Venta by as long as two centuries.
Overview: The Olmec lived along the Gulf Coast of Mexico in the modern-day Mexican states of Tabasco and Veracruz. The Olmec society lasted from about 1600 BCE to around 350 BCE, when environmental factors made their villages unlivable.
What caused Teotihuacán’s decline in the seventh century (600s CE)? Internal uprisings coupled with external rebellions likely contributed to the city’s decline.
How did Olmec shamans view the role of their nagual? Olmec shamans relied on their nagual, or “animal spirit companions,” to assist them in their interactions with the supernatural world and protect them from harm. Which civilization drew the most attention from the Spanish as they conquered Mexico?
Who created Machu Picchu? The construction of Machu Picchu was likely started by order of the Inca emperor Pachacuti, earth shaker, sometime during the mid-15th century.
Drought theory. The drought theory holds that rapid climate change in the form of severe drought (a megadrought) brought about the Classic Maya collapse. Paleoclimatologists have discovered abundant evidence that prolonged droughts occurred in the Yucatán Peninsula and Petén Basin areas during the Terminal Classic.
Scholars have suggested a number of potential reasons for the downfall of Maya civilization in the southern lowlands, including overpopulation, environmental degradation, warfare, shifting trade routes and extended drought. It’s likely that a complex combination of factors was behind the collapse.
Some historians assert that the Mayans were the descendants of the Olmecs.
Following Toltec decline, a further period of unrest in the Late Postclassic Period lasted until 1428, when the Aztec defeated the rival city of Azcapotzalco and became the dominant force in central Mexico. This last native Mesoamerican empire fell to the Spaniards, led by Hernán Cortés, in 1521.
The Olmecs lived in hot, humid lowlands along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico in what is now southern Veracruz and Tabasco states in southern Mexico.
The Olmec were American Indians, not Negroes (as Melgar had thought) or Nordic supermen.”