Location of Aztecs
The Templo Mayor of Tenochtitlan stands as evidence of the Aztec empire's pyramids. (Photo: Images )
Visitors to Mexico can get a taste of the country's pre-Hispanic heritage at many ancient sites, including vestiges of the once-mighty Aztec empire. While pyramids are among Mexico's most famous major cultural and architectural attractions, only one of the Aztecs' many pyramids have survived to the modern age. Most of the country's ancient pyramids were built by other pre-Hispanic people, such as the Maya or the Zapotec.
About the Templo Mayor
The Templo Mayor (templomayor.inah.gob.mx) is the sole remaining evidence of Aztec pyramids. Before the widespread destruction of Aztec pyramids by Spanish settlers, the structures once proliferated throughout the Aztec empire, often serving as the focal point of cities and figuring largely in religious rites, including human sacrifice. The Templo Mayor was the centerpiece of Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztec empire, and has been dated to the early 14th century. However, the temple was rebuilt and remodeled as many as eight times, a common practice among both the Aztecs and the Mayas. At one point, it was redesigned to consist of two separate temples. Compared with Mayan pyramids, the Templo Mayor and other Aztec pyramids have much smaller steps, or levels.
Templo Mayor: Modern Location
The Templo Mayor is situated in the midst of modern-day Mexico City and is open to visitors. It features an archaeological museum as part of the modern temple complex. The temple was only unearthed in 1978, when an eight-ton Aztec carving was discovered on the site and the Mexican government decided to destroy several colonial buildings to restore the temple for public visits. Despite going unknown and underground for centuries, the temple's location appears orchestrated with more modern sights of interest; it sits between the National Palace and the first cathedral built in Mexico, adjacent to the Mexico City's main plaza, the Zocalo.
Templo Mayor and Tenochtitlan
Templo Mayor originally was built as part of the capital city of the Aztec empire, Tenochtitlan. The site of the temple was considered by the Aztecs to have been the precise place where an eagle perched on a cactus with a snake in its beak, a legendary image that has become Mexico's national symbol. According to the Aztecs, this event marked the location as the center of the world. When the Aztecs inhabited the area, several lakes covered the surrounding valley, including Lake Texcoco. Tenochtitlan was situated on an island in the middle of the lake. At the height of Tenochtitlan's activity and power as a capital city, it had a bustling market, a system of aqueducts for fresh water, a royal zoo, sewage collection by barge and canals as thoroughfares.
Other Aztec Sites and Aztec-Related Pyramids
Though Tenochtitlan's Templo Mayor is the only Aztec pyramid with extant ruins, you can still visit other sites around Mexico that provide a window into Aztec culture. At the Museo Nacional de Antropologia (mna.inah.gob.mx/), you'll see an ancient Aztec calendar stone and compare Templo Mayor with reproductions of the ancient temples in Teotihuacan, erected centuries before the Aztecs created their own. For a closer look at the temples of Teotihuacan, visit the complex, situated about 30 miles northeast of Mexico City. While the city was built between the 1st and 7th centuries, the Aztecs eventually inhabited it, and evidence of their occupation is evident in Aztec-style sculptures on the site.
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What is good info. About the aztec.
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What is some info on the Aztecs.
The Aztec people/tribe were certain ethnic groups of central Mexico, particularly those groups who spoke the Nahuatl language and who dominated large parts of Mesoamerica in t