General Aztecs Maya Tocuaro Kids Contact 19 Sep 2017/8 Reed
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Seated Mictlantecuhtli figure

Aztec seated figure of Mictlantecuhtli in the British Museum

Sandstone seated figure of Mictlantecuhtli, Mexica (Aztec), 1300-1521 CE, height 60 cms., British Museum

Mictlantecuhtli was the focus of a cult particularliy connected with death. This figure wears a skull mask and on the shoulder and back bears the glyphs 2 Skull, 5 Vulture and 4 House, which are likely to be calendrical names or place glyphs. The sandstone from which it is made is not found in the Mexican highlands and was probably obtained in Veracruz. Coastal sculpural styles seem to have influenced Aztec sculptors. In the course of their imperial conquests, the Aztecs also brought back captured objects and installed them in their own temples at Tenochtitlan.

From Ancient Mexico in the British Museum by Colin McEwan, British Museum Press, 1994, p. 75.

Photo by Ian Mursell/Mexicolore.