cliff dwellers

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cliff dwellers

cliff dwellers, Ancestral Pueblo people, sometimes called Anasazi, who were builders of the ancient cliff dwellings found in the canyons and on the mesas of the U.S. Southwest, principally on the tributaries of the Rio Grande and the Colorado River in New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado. It was once thought that these ruins were the work of an extinct aboriginal people, but it has been established that they were built (11th–14th cent.) by the ancestors of the present Pueblo. The dwellings were large communal habitations built on ledges in the canyon walls and on the flat tops of the mesas. Access to the cliffs was very difficult and thus highly defensible against nomadic predatory tribes such as the Navajo. The cliff dwellers were sedentary agriculturists who planted crops in the river valleys below their high-perched houses. They were experts at irrigating the fields. Their lives were organized on a communal pattern, and the many kivas (see kiva) show that their religious ceremonies were like those of the Pueblo today. Many of the dwellings are now in national parks. Some of the better-known ones are those of the Mesa Verde National Park, in Colorado, where there are more than 300 dwellings; Canyons of the Ancients and Yucca House national monuments, also in Colorado; Hovenweep National Monument, in Utah; Bandelier and Gila Cliff Dwellings national monuments, in New Mexico; and Canyon de Chelly, Casa Grande Ruins, Montezuma Castle, and Wupatki national monuments, in Arizona.


See W. Current, Pueblo Architecture of the Southwest (1971).

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References in periodicals archive ?
The tour begins at the private, members only Cliff Dwellers Club providing stunning views of the lakeshore and city.
Nocturnal monarchs strut around in broad daylight thicket-loving old hermit bucks stand silhouetted on open ridges, and alpine-country cliff dwellers descend to mingle with does in less protected, more accessible habitat.
Some add their own creations to this growing population of small cliff dwellers.
It's another fiscal cliff?" Well, judging by the atmosphere in our nation's capitol, it appears that we are all going to be cliff dwellers for quite some time.
He locates the novel's imagined alternative to modern capitalism in the racial primitivism associated with the community of the Indian Cliff Dwellers, arguing that the novel forecloses this possibility as Tom's work at the Cliffs Dwellers' city ultimately turns the artifacts he unearths into commodities.
One of the undoubted jewels in Colorado's crown, however, is the Mesa Verde National Park, which allows an authentic - and harumscarum - look into the lives of the ancient cliff dwellers of this area.
Rod Beach is a retired physicist who developed a unique theory about what really happened to these people of the great civilization of the Anasazi who are also known as the Cliff Dwellers. Rod's first book on this subject received excellent reviews and he continues to demonstrate his capability to tell a great story.
Oneof theundoubtedjewels inColorado's crown is the Mesa Verde National Park, whichallowsan authentic look into the lives of the ancient cliff dwellers of this area.You climb ladders and staircases to get your close-up insight into the spectacularly-preserved dwellings that hug the cliffs.
Summary: IAEd wondered why they lived there, like cliff dwellers perched in high rises along hillsides, people who lived along the Pacific Ring of Fire or tectonic plates.
Composed of close-up or distant shots of cityscapes and high rise buildings, these images--inspired by Hitchcock's Rear Window as seen through the lens of Andreas Gursky--team with almost imperceptible yet tragically telling details of modern-day cliff dwellers. In them, we get to spy on a woman watching television, a man staring intently at the papers on his desk, a reclining figure, a shirtless, tattooed man on the phone.
The 'Anasazi' is reputed to be a direct descendent of beans grown 1,500 years ago by cliff dwellers in the Southwest United States.
Other important works illustrated in this book are Stuart Davis' One Mellow Pad, George Bellows' Cliff Dwellers, Thomas Hart Benton's Cradling Wheat and Georgia O'Keeffe's Brooklyn Bridge.