General Aztecs Maya Tocuaro Kids Contact 19 Apr 2021/3 Alligator
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‘Personified’ flint knife

‘Personified’ Aztec flint knife

The tecpatl (Aztec sacrificial knife) was an important feature of Aztec rituals. ‘With the knife, priests cut open the chests of sacrificial victims to extract the heart that would feed the gods, hoping that such a gift would bring blessings to humankind’ (Manuel Aguilar-Moreno). Tecpatl was also one of the four important year-bearer calendar signs. Tecpatl blades often bore faces, the teeth and eyes accentuated by inlaid white flint and obsidian (a volcanic glass). A classic tecpatl face is visible in the tongue of the central deity in the famous Aztec Sunstone. We have built an entire children’s microsite on the Aztecs around an animated characater called Tec(patl). National Anthropology Museum, Mexico City.

Photo by Ana Laura Landa/Mexicolore

‘Tec’ comes to life...

Our interactive Sunstone experience