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Eagle and Jaguar ‘talking’

Aztec stone sculpture of eagle and jaguar talking, National Museum of Anthropology

Mexica (Aztec) stone sculpture of eagle and jaguar figures ‘talking’, width 46.8 cms., National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City.

Similar to a stone relief depicting the same scene in the American Museum of Natural History, New York, both eagle and jaguar figures bear feather adornments on the head and emit long speech scrolls from the mouths, reminiscent of the classic war symbols atl tlachinolli. The entire scene appears framed by woven basketry, from which the two figures stand out. The fineness of the carving suggests the Late Classic period.

Adapted from Azteca Mexica by José Alcina Franch, Miguel León-Portilla and Eduardo Matos Moctezuma, Madrid, 1992, p. 245.

Photo by Ian Mursell/Mexicolore.