May 28, 2016

1491, 2581 MEXICO - Maya people

2581 Maya peoples

Posted on15.03.2015, 28.05.2016
The overarching term "Maya" is a collective designation to include the native peoples in southern Mexico and northern Central America that share some degree of cultural and linguistic heritage. In other words, the term embraces many distinct ethnic groups that each have their own particular traditions, cultures, and historical identity. The pre-Columbian Maya population was approximately eight million, and despite the centuries of massacres, slavery and diseases, in nowadays there are an estimated seven million living in this area.

1491 A Mayan little girl

The largest populations of contemporary Maya inhabit Guatemala, Belize, and the western portions of Honduras and El Salvador, as well as large segments of population within the Mexican states of Yucatán, Campeche, Quintana Roo, Tabasco, and Chiapas. One of the largest group of modern Maya can be found in Mexico's Yucatán state and the neighboring states of Campeche and Quintana Roo. They commonly identify themselves simply as "Maya" with no further ethnic subdivision, and speak the language which anthropologists term "Yucatec Maya".

They were first exposed to Europeans in 1511, but Chichen Itza fell only in 1570. A large 19th century revolt by the native Maya people of Yucatán, known as the Caste War of Yucatán, was one of the most successful modern Native American revolts; results included the temporary existence of the Maya state of Chan Santa Cruz, recognized as an independent nation by the British Empire. The Maya people are known for their brightly colored, yarn-based, textiles that are woven into capes, shirts, blouses, huipiles and dresses. Each village has its own distinctive pattern, making it possible to distinguish a person's home town.

Women's clothing consists of a shirt and a long skirt. Maya children participate in daily tasks and contribute to both their families and communities with day-to-day activities that include cooking, watching over their younger siblings, and helping out by running into town to get goods for their home. From an early age, they demonstrate a great desire to be included in the normal work activities of the household, and enjoy using their newly acquired skills to work together with the rest of the community. They learn much what they know through observation, imitation, and traditional nonverbal communication.

About the stamps
On the postcard 1491
The stamp is part of  the series México creación popular (Folk Art Mexico), about which I wrote here.

On the postcard 2581 
The first five stamps are part of the definitives series American Design, about which I wrote here. About the last stamp, issued to celebrate the Year of the Horse, I wrote here.

Maya peoples - Wikipedia

Sender 1491, 2581: Jingpeng
Sent from ??? (??? / Mexico), on 16.04.2014
Photo: Roberto Giagnoli

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