Geographic factors greatly influenced the development of civilizations in Mesoamerica. The Mesoamerica high lands lie between the mountains of Sierra Madre. Also there low lands are crisscrossed by many rivers. They are also less active
Olmec cities contained pyramids and temples built on earthen mounds. Also the Olmec worshipped many gods. In Gulf coast of Mexico the Olmec culture began. Last, in 400B.C. the Olmec civilization disappeared.
The Olmec first established an large trade network. The routes carried Olmec culture throughout Mesoamerica. The Mesoamerican people were influenced by Olmec art and religious practices.
San Jose Mogote emerged as Zapotec center of power. Zapotec location help them defend themselves against their enemies. However, the Zapotec people were developing an advanced society to the southwest.
The Maya society was structured according to a class system. Which religion shaped daily life. The daily life for poor people were famers wore plain clothes and lived in mud huts. While the wealthy people of Maya had stone building, and colorful decorated clothes.
The city flourished from about 300 b.c to a.d 150 and was home to as many as 200,000 people. These cities included Copan. The maya built temples on the top of some of the pyramids. Many of the great Maya cities lay hidden beneath the jungle growth for centuries.