Cultura mexicana sometimes referred to as mexicanidad Orientation Identification. The word "Mexico" is derived from Mexica pronounced "Me-shee-ka" , the name for the indigenous group that settled in central Mexico in the early fourteenth century and is best known as the Aztecs. Mexicans make several cultural subdivisions within the nation. The most common one identifies northern, central, and south or south-eastern Mexico. The extensive and desertlike north was only sparsely populated until the middle of the twentieth century, except for some important cities such as Monterrey.