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Mississippian


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Art & Architecture Thesaurus

Preferred Term

Mississippian

Details

Refers to a Native American culture and style evident in North America from around 800 CE to the mid-18th century, when its last representatives, the Natchez, declined and were dispersed. It was prevalent in the southeast and mid-continent in the river valleys of what are now the states of Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and parts of Wisconsin, Minnesota and the Great Plains. The culture was based on agricultural development of the bottomlands and government by theocratic village-states. Village architecture is characterized by dwellings arranged around oval or pyramidal earth mounds and a central ceremonial plaza. The style of decorated utilitarian and ceremonial objects is characterized by work in copper, shell, stone, clay, and feathers, often with elaborate designs including human figures, animal motifs, and geometric shapes.

Variations

Mississippian culture

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