Minoritized languages moodboard: Zapoteco

Zapotec languages are a group of closely-related indigenous Mesoamerican languages, spoken by the Zapotec people from Mexico. They live mainly in Oaxaca and its surrounding states: Puebla, Veracruz, and Guerrero.


The archaeological site of Cantona, Puebla, Mexico. This site was occupied during the Classic period: AD 100-900, and peaked about 600-900.

Cantona was a huge, fortified city, about 15.5 square kilometres in size -making it 2nd in size to Teotihuacan. Cantona includes 24 ball courts, and at its peak, had a population of 80,000-90,000 inhabitants.

There appears to have been strong ceremonialism. This is suggested by the human remains exhibiting decapitation: burned, carved, and boiled bones, with artefacts on top of them. It seem as though human remains were used as offerings in the construction of pyramids and altars.

Photos courtesy of & taken by Russ Bowling.