This essay compares the Egyptian architecture, with that of the Olmecs, an early civilization in Central America

Essay by cadenzaHigh School, 12th grade December 2003

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Ancient History Assignment

"Egyptian architecture is more advanced than the architecture of the Olmecs"

For centuries, the dedicated craftsmen of Egypt have been developing a range of techniques and skills, which have been passed down from generation to generation. The result is that our fair kingdom now boasts some of the most elaborate and sophisticated examples of advanced architecture in the world as we know it. We have fine pottery; furniture embellished with delicate indentations; enormous monuments representing celestial beings; hypostyle halls; pylons, courtyards, two-dimensional carvings depicting myths and pictorial impressions of the afterlife; intrinsically decorated sculptures; and a myriad of beautified tools and elaborately designed utensils for both ornamental and practical purposes.

However, our most attractive creation, in my opinion is our majestic, beautifully designed, jewel-encrusted pyramids. The epitome of Egyptian architecture, they represent everything we perceive as culturally significant. Religion, family, education, deities, science, art, music, fashion, record-keeping, patriotism and progress - its all preserved for eternity inside steadfast layers of cemented materials.

For thousands of years we have perceived ourselves as the greatest culture, tantamount only to Greece and Rome. Now, however, as science becomes increasingly more advanced, we have discovered that other civilizations do exist.

Nineteen thousand kilometres west of Egypt lies the lush, tropical marshland known as Central America. Far from being devoid of human occupation, as we have previously perceived, the area is inhabited by over 350,000 members of the civilization known as the Olmecs. The word 'Olmec' translates to mean 'inhabitant of the rubber country.' The population is distributed among a number of city-states strewn along the alluvial countryside, its flat surface punctuated only by the mountainous terrain of Tuxtlas.

As exploration progresses we have acquired a wealth of knowledge about their lifestyles and ethnology. We have come to realise that...