2. Who were the Olmec?
The name Olmec derives from a Nahuatl word O̅lmēcah (plural) meaning "rubber people" or "people from the land of rubber." This name was understood by the Aztecs to reference an earlier people that had once inhabited the Gulf lowlands - jungles spanning the modern Mexican states of Veracruz and Tabasco. We now know that the Olmec flourished from ca. 1500 - 400 B.C.E. and archaeologists refer to this as Mesoamerica's most advanced Formative period culture. This culture did, in fact, harvest rubber trees and the earliest solid rubber balls used in the Mesoamerican "ball game" come from Olmec sites.2a. Sophisticated art in an early age 2b. Ceremonial Centers in this cultura madre 'mother culture' of Mexico