General Aztecs Maya Tocuaro Kids Contact 28 Nov 2020/4 Rain
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Mexicolore contributor Gilbert Estrada

Important Mexica artefacts found in Mexico City

We’re sincerely grateful to Dr. Gilbert Estrada, History Professor at Long Beach City College, California, for sharing with us this beautiful infographic that he created as an educational resource for his students. We’re certain you will agree it deserves a far wider audience. Here he provides some background to its creation...

Infographic of the location of important Mexica artefacts found in Mexico City, by Dr. Gilbert Estrada
Infographic of the location of important Mexica artefacts found in Mexico City, by Dr. Gilbert Estrada (Click on image to enlarge)

I am an Urban Historian and a Professor of U.S. and Latin American History. Like my students, my favorite era is Mesoamerican history, especially the Mexica (better known as the Aztecs). I believe deeply in multimedia teaching and creating a rich visual culture. I love creating many didactic visual tools. I created this infographic because I wanted something to show the importance of the Mexica Sacred Precinct: the literal center of the Universe for the Mexica. The Sacred Precinct held the most important artifacts, buildings, and ceremonies for the Mexica and many items survived the Spanish and Native revolt. Personally, I wanted to know exactly where every major item was found. Although many Mexica artifacts have been found (and only a few pyramids), the items found within Mexico-Tenochtitlan’s Sacred Precinct are critically important to our understanding of the Mexica.

Model of the Sacred Precinct of Tenochtitlan, National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City; photo by/courtesy of Gilbert Estrada
Model of the Sacred Precinct of Tenochtitlan, National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City; photo by/courtesy of Gilbert Estrada (Click on image to enlarge)

I utilized multiple sources to confirm the location of these important findings. The Templo Mayor Museum is a treasure trove of information and have a great model that explains where several of these items are. The Mexican Museum of Anthropology has a famous model (constantly updated) that also lays out the sacred precinct. The model was useful for buildings like the priest quarters and Ehecatl-Quetzalcoatl. The Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) has done amazing research for decades. But recently, they have unearthed new findings, including the Tzompantli and Ball court (not pictured). They also have a great media presence; their research was important and can be found on their website and Youtube channel. Speaking with colleagues, reading other books and articles also helped, including work by Professor Manuel Aguilar and The Aztec Calendar Stone, edited by Villela and Miller was also useful. I also reviewed countless maps and satellite images.

As more research is made, more items will be added.

This article was uploaded to the Mexicolore website on Jun 17th 2020

The website of the Templo Mayor Museum, Mexico City
INAH website
Museo Nacional de Antropología website
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