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What does Indigenous Americas Mexico Mean?

Indigenous people are important in every region. They have taken down their culture from generation to generation and have kept their legacy alive. Do you know what does indigenous Americas Mexico mean? Are all Mexicans true or there are some specific original Mexicans? This is what we are going to see in this article today.

1. Does Mexico have Indigenous People?

Yes, Mexico does have indigenous people. The indigenous population in Mexico is two of the largest indigenous populations in America. Out of the total population, 21.5% of people are indigenous. The total number of indigenous people in Mexico is 16,933,283. Currently, there are 78 different indigenous groups who live across Mexico. They have their unique identity, culture, history, and language. These people are considered the original Mexican people. (See What is Population Composition Definition?)

2. What are Mexican Indigenous People called?

Do you know what does indigenous Americas Mexico mean or what are Mexican indigenous people called? This is the question that is going to be addressed here. Mexico has many indigenous ethnic groups living there. Currently, there are 78 indigenous groups in Mexico. Out of 78 groups, some of the most exclusive and predominant groups are:

  • Nahua: Nahua is the largest indigenous group of Mexico with over a million Nahua population. They live throughout Central Mexico. The language of this group comes from the original Aztec language. The Nahuas are considered the direct descendants of the Aztecs.
  • Mixtec: According to the estimates, the population of Mixtec in Mexico is around 5 lakh. They practice subsistence farming of wheat, corn, and beans. They have to work outside for a living. A practice called Tequio is the annual practice where all the Mixtec people gather and celebrate. It is done to honor their patron saints and to fulfill their duty of service to the community.
  • Purepecha: Purepecha is an indigenous group of Mexico that lives in and near the Sierra Madre mountains. They speak the P’urhépecha language along with Spanish. They are proud of their culture and practices and encourage their children to speak their native language. This community is known to make colorful clay sculptures from locally available clay.
  • Totonac: The indigenous community of Totonac lives near Mexico’s capital. As of today, this group has approximately 90,000 people living. Although most of the members of this community have converted to Catholicism, they are still known to practice their pre-Columbian traditions.

3. How do You Know if You are Indigenous Mexican?

JAN23 What does Indigenous Americas Mexico Mean
By Getty Images from Unsplash+

To find out if you are indigenous Mexican or not, you have to take a DNA test. There are a few DNA test kits that have been created to check whether the person is indigenous Mexican or not. These tests are not free and one needs to pay a certain amount to get the tests done. But they have good accuracy rates and are definitely reliable.

Another way to know if you are indigenous Mexican or not is by getting your relatives tested too. The male member of the family can get the Y-Chromosome test done which can tell whether the person has indigenous Mexican American ancestry. You can get the most reliable result if the oldest member of the family gets the tests done because they are closest to the true origin than a younger person is. You can then compare your results with theirs to know if you have indigenous Mexican ancestry or not. See What do Mexican People Wear?

4. Does Mexican Show up on DNA tests?

Unfortunately, no. Mexico has a very rich culture and heritage. Mexicans have their distinct languages and practices that they are very proud of. There are many indigenous groups that live in Mexico. The DNA of the Mexicans is very diverse and sometimes features small matches from around the world. So, it is not possible to look at a DNA test and conclude that this person is from Mexico. The only way to know if a person is of definitive descent in Mexico is by getting a result that shows a high percentage of DNA from Mexico or indigenous Americas. This test result would indicate that the person hails from Mexico. 

5. How much of Mexico is Indigenous?

A total of 21.5% of Mexico is indigenous. According to the country’s census bureau National Institute of Statistics and Geography, there are 78 distinct indigenous groups that live in Mexico. There are approximately 17 million people in Mexico who identify themselves as indigenous. In the next segments, you will learn what does indigenous Americas Mexico mean, so read on. Must read What are Co Cultural Groups Examples?

6. Are the Aztecs Mexican?

Aztecs have their origin in Mexico. The Aztecs were the Native American people. The homeland of the Aztecs was called Aztlan which is modern-day Mexico. In the early 16th century, the Aztecs dominated northern Mexico at the time of the Spanish conquest. Aztec was a nomadic culture and they settled on small islands in Lake Texcoco. Here, they founded the town of Tenochtitlan in 1325, modern-day Mexico City. 

7. Who are the Original Mexicans?

The original Mexicans are the people who have been living in Mexico before the arrival of European settlers in the 15th century. These people are also known as the indigenous people of Mexico or the indigenous Americas Mexico. They are native people and have their own distinct identities. They have their own traditions and customs which they have been following for ages. They take up almost 21.5% of the total population of Mexico. Check out 3 Types of Native American Shelters.

8. What does Indigenous American Mean?

Before you learn what does indigenous Americas Mexico mean, let’s find out what does indigenous American mean. The indigenous Americans are the people who are the native inhabitants of that region. They have been living there before the arrival of European settlers in the 15th century. They make up a great part of the Mexican population and have their own distinct identity. These groups have a shared national identity. The terms like Native American and American Indian are used to refer to people who live within what is now the United States before the arrival of European settlers. These groups are the original people from Mexico.

These groups follow their age-old traditions and practices even today and believe in what their ancestors followed. There are almost 78 distinct indigenous groups identified in Mexico. They take up 21.5% of the total population of Mexico and by numbers, there are around 17 million people who identify themselves as indigenous. 

9. What does Indigenous Americas Mexico Mean?

Ever wondered what does indigenous Americas Mexico mean? This is what we are going to answer here. Indigenous Americas Mexico refers to people who are the descendants of the indigenous peoples of Mexico. They are the native people of that region. It means that these people have the DNA of the Indigenous Americas. These indigenous groups have been in Mexico since before the arrival of the European settlers. They follow their traditional customs and practices. They have their own distinct identity and language. (See What are the Sumerian Social Classes?)

10. What Tribe is Indigenous Americas Mexico?

Since you know what does indigenous Americas Mexico mean, take a look at the tribes that are indigenous Americas Mexico: 

  • Náhuatl
  • Maya
  • Zapoteco
  • Mixteco
  • Otomí
  • Tzeltal
  • Tztotzil
  • Totonaca
  • Mazateco
  • Chol

The importance of these indigenous tribes in Mexico can be understood now. They have been there for a long time and make up a huge part of the population. They maintain their distinct identity and follow their customs. These tribes have distinct identities and make the place culturally diverse. 


Written by Alex Williams

Alex Williams is a PhD student in urban studies and planning. He is broadly interested in the historical geographies of capital, the geopolitical economy of urbanization, environmental and imperial history, critical urban theory, and spatial dialectics.

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