Social Sciences

Examples of training period

In this Formative context it is equivalent to Neolithic, the Formative occurs between 3,600 BC and 500 BC, in this phase three parts can be captured: Early, Intermediate and Late. The most important cultures of this period are: Valdivia, Mayo-Chinchipe, Machalilla, Chorrera and Upano.

During the Early Formative (3,600 BC-2,600 BC) agricultural villages already appear, although agriculture, although incipient, is installed as the main economic sustenance of the people since it was much more efficient than gathering, while hunting is quite reduced. Pezca continues as an important sustenance for the local economy.

They appreciate other inventions such as the loom, polished stone is used to make figures or Monoliths, such as the “Stone Owls” of Valdivia.

However, the most important invention of this time is ceramics, which starts from something simple and rudimentary to something complex, the oldest ceramic in America is in the Valdivia Culture (3,600 BC) and is much older than the ceramic of Colombia (3,200 BC), Mexico (2,600 BC) and Peru (1,800 BC). From the Early Formative, the only vestiges known to date (in Ecuador) are those of the Valdivia culture.

In the Intermediate Formative (2,600 BC-1,800 BC) there is the appearance of Administrative Centers and cities, whose chiefs were Priests and / or Priestesses.

As the incipient agriculture was not able to provide enough food for the village to grow in size, then the surplus population always migrated to another place and founded a new village, but the new village always maintained a relationship of dependency with the original one. Thus, with the passage of time, the original village controls several others causing it to become an administrative center, this center of power no longer does agriculture (although it does other trades) and receives the food necessary to support its settlers from the other villages.

In this period there is already an incipient dominant social class that administers the rest of the people, this social class are the Priests and Priestesses who, supported by their magical power, maintained the power of society, the priests made invocations or connections with the afterlife and in return they demanded a tribute from the people for their services, in addition the priests because of their quality as special beings had the right to administer and control not only the administrative center but the other villages created from it.

The venus of Valdivia could not only be a symbol of fertility but also a symbol of the power of the Valdivian priestesses.

From this time we have cities and administrative centers such as Real Alto (Valdivia Culture) and Palanda (Mayo-Chinchipe Culture), the first known to have maintained commercial exchange with the city of Caral (2,900 BC) in Peru, as well as evidence has been found that the commercial exchange between Real Alto and Palanda was very frequent despite the fact that the former was on the coast and the latter in the Amazon.

The administrative centers were towns that generally consisted of houses for the ruling class, at least one plaza that was used in ceremonies and meetings, at least one large construction that served as a temple, and houses for the common people.

In the case of Real Alto, the houses were 12×8 m, oval, had two doors, one on each side of the house, internal divisions and a fireplace in the middle of the house. Most of the houses surrounded a main rectangular plaza. The elite houses and temples were located on Tolas (artificial earth mounds).

In the case of Palanda, the central plaza was circular and walled with a diameter of 40m, the elite houses were circular, their foundations were made of stone and surrounded the central plaza.

The Formative Tadío (1,800 BC – 500 BC) has as main cultures Machalilla, Upano and Chorrera. This part of the Formative is characterized by several things, the first is the disappearance of the Valdivia culture that is replaced by the Chorrera culture and the Machalilla culture, while the Mayo-Chinchipe culture is disappearing at the same time that the Upano culture is emerging.

The final phase of the Valdivia culture and the first phases of the Chorrera and Machalilla cultures influenced the appearance of ceramics in some places in Peru, however in other places in that country, ceramics appear by virtue of the cultures there.

Another characteristic aspect of this phase is that the Machalilla Culture was born with a ceramic style influenced by the Amazon (influence of the Mayo-Chinchipe culture) while the Chorrera culture maintains a traditional style inherited from Valdivia.

The government and the economy are similar to those of the Intermediate Formative, only that agricultural techniques improve and there is already the hegemony of the dominant social class that continue to be the priests and priestesses.

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