General Aztecs Maya Tocuaro Kids Contact 19 Apr 2021/3 Alligator
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Professor Patrick Johansson

Question for March 2021

Which was the most common superstition in Aztec times? Asked by Sheringdale Primary School. Chosen and answered by Professor Patrick Johansson.

‘Mexican Idea of Sacrifice to the Sun God’ - Lewis Spence
‘Mexican Idea of Sacrifice to the Sun God’ - Lewis Spence (Click on image to enlarge)

They were beliefs not superstitions. If you died in war or in sacrifice you helped the sun to rise from east to the south (zenith), if you were a man, and to descend from the Zenith to the west if you were a woman who had died in her first pregnancy.

Picture source:-
Image scanned from The Gods of Mexico by Lewis Spence, T. Fisher Unwin Ltd., London, 1923, p. 301. NOTE: this illustration was based on an original found in the Codex Borgia. A stream of precious (human) blood flows from a victim of human sacrifice, via a priest representing the death god (centre right), to Tonatiuh, the Sun God, shown in the middle of the picture.

Professor Patrick Johansson has answered just this one question

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Mexicolore replies: Thanks, Martin. Yes, that’s a great source!