Modeling Olmec participation in Early Horizon interaction networks requires better understanding of the relations of Gulf Olmec communities with one another as well as with contemporaries elsewhere in Mesoamerica. We compare pottery, figurines, and obsidian assemblages from a recently isolated Early Formative component at Tres Zapotes with contemporary assemblages from San Lorenzo and Macayal, both in the Coatzacoalcos basin. Our analysis indicates that village inhabitants at Tres Zapotes interacted with populations in eastern Olman but also forged their own economic and social ties with central Veracruz and the Mexican highlands. This evidence suggests a heterogeneous politico-economic landscape in which multiple polities of varying complexity participated in overlapping networks of interaction, alliance, and competition within and beyond Olman.
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