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History of World Invasion: Americas: Indigenous peoples of the Americas

 

Indigenous peoples of the Americas


The Indigenous peoples of the Americas are the inhabitants of the Americas before the invasion of the Europeans in the 15th century, and the ethnic groups who now identify themselves with those peoples.

Although some Indigenous peoples of the Americas were traditionally hunter-gatherers—and many, especially in the Amazon basin, still are—many groups practiced aquaculture and agriculture. While some societies depended heavily on agriculture, others practiced a mix of farming, hunting and gathering. In some regions the Indigenous peoples created monumental architecture, large-scale organized cities, city-states, chiefdoms, states, kingdoms and empires. Some had varying degrees of knowledge of engineering, architecture, mathematics, astronomy, writing, physics, medicine, planting and irrigation, geology, mining, metallurgy, sculpture and goldsmithing.


Many parts of the Americas are still populated by Indigenous peoples; some countries have sizeable populations, especially Bolivia, Canada, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru and the United States. At least a thousand different Indigenous languages are spoken in the Americas. Some, such as the Quechuan languages, Aymara, Guaraní, Mayan languages and Nahuatl, count their speakers in millions. Many also maintain aspects of Indigenous cultural practices to varying degrees, including religion, social organization and subsistence practices. Like most cultures, over time, cultures specific to many Indigenous peoples have evolved to incorporate traditional aspects but also cater to modern needs. Some Indigenous peoples still live in relative isolation from Western culture and a few are still counted as uncontacted peoples.

 
 

Indigenous peoples of the Americas

Indigenous peoples of the Americas
This map displays the distribution of indigenous people from each country in the Americas. Detailed information is displayed for Canadian provinces, U.S. states, Mexican states, Brazilian states and Chilean regions. Map shapes from Natural Earth data, projected into a Lambert Azimuthal Equal-Area projection using a Python script. Data sources: Country-level statistics.

 

Language families of Indigenous peoples in North America

Language families of Indigenous peoples in North America: shown across present-day Canada, Greenland, the United States, and northern Mexico.

 

 

Cultural areas of North America at time of European contact.

Cultural areas of North America at time of European contact.

 

This map shows the percentage of Indigenous population in different countries of the Americas.

 

Schematic illustration of maternal (mtDNA) gene-flow in and out of Beringia, from 25,000 years ago to present.

Schematic illustration of maternal (mtDNA) gene-flow in and out of Beringia, from 25,000 years ago to present.

 
 

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