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A Linguistic Look at the Olmecs

Lyle Campbell and Terrence Kaufman
American Antiquity
Vol. 41, No. 1 (Jan., 1976), pp. 80-89
DOI: 10.2307/279044
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/279044
Page Count: 10
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A Linguistic Look at the Olmecs
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Abstract

This paper explores the hypothesis that the archaeological Olmecs, at least in part, were speakers of Mixe-Zoquean languages. The hypothesis is supported by not only geographical and temporal correlation, but by Mixe-Zoquean loan words in other Mesoamerican languages, many of which refer to things diagnostic of the Mesoamerican culture area. Also the cultural inventory revealed in Proto-Mixe-Zoquean vocabulary provides additional support.

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