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The Use of the Term "Mixtec" in Mesoamerican Archaeology

H. B. Nicholson
American Antiquity
Vol. 26, No. 3 (Jan., 1961), pp. 431-433
DOI: 10.2307/277413
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/277413
Page Count: 3
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The Use of the Term "Mixtec" in Mesoamerican Archaeology
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Abstract

Vaillant's geographic and stylistic term, Mixteca-Puebla, is rapidly and unfortunately being supplanted by an ethnic and linguistic term, Mixtec, which has rather suddenly become a popular label for the final pictorial horizon style of much of Mesoamerica. The well-known dangers of using an ethnic or linguistic term for an archaeological manifestation are intensified in this case by the lack of systematic archaeological work in the Mixteca region. The great mercantile and religious center of Nahua-speakers rather than Mixtec-speakers at Cholula is suggested as the origin of the almost pan-Mesoamerican diffusion of the Mixteca-Puebla style in Postclassic times. Thus, Mixteca-Puebla, not Mixtec, should be used to describe this style which flourished in and probably originated somewhere in a geographic region dominated in late preconquest times by Nahua-speakers in the north and Mixtec-speakers in the south.

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