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Maya Southern Mesoamerica Population ng AD 250-1400 Highly developed written language Large pyramids temples and carved stone monuments Elaborate funeral practices Societies ruled by aristocratic nobility Yucatan Peninsula has the largest known ball court Ballplayer was among the ceremonial titles of Maya kings Olmec Mexicos Gulf Coast 1500-200BC First widespread art style Mesoamericas mother culture Settled village life rise of an elite class Pronounced Ole Mek1st earliest artistic representations of ballplayers and archaeological evidence of ballgame equipmentRare ball earliest rubber ball recovered from the site of el manati Olmec Western Mexico Teotihuacan Maya Veracruz Toltec Haustec Aztec Spanish Conquest The Mesoamericans discovered how to make a very bouncy ball out of a native plant This plant is the rubber tree Early tools were probably made of sharp bone or wood The channels allow the raw liquid rubber latex to flow down the vertical container and into a container The juice of the Morning Glory vine is added to the latex to give the ball its extraordinary bounce Some balls had human skulls at the core The size of the balls varied form location to location Some were the size of softballs some were larger than a beach ball The uniform that the players had to wear had to protect the player but also allow for quick movement Most of the uniforms had headgear a sash or a belt The court was shaped like a capital letter I built of cut stone and painted with bright colors It was a symbol of a citys wealth and power The game wasnt only a sporting competition it was based on religious beliefs also The outcome affected the lives of everyone playing and watching The ballgame was the first organized game in the history of sports Yuguitos are among the earliest pieces of ballgame equipment They may have been used to hit the ball or to
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