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La Noche triste (the sad night).	Source: Public Domain

The Hunt for Montezuma’s Stolen Aztec Treasure (Video)

In November 1519, the formidable Aztec king, Montezuma , ruled over a flourishing empire at its pinnacle. His empire, comprising 500 city-states and nearly 6 million people, centered on the...
Aztec daily life seen in the Mural of the Aztec market of Tlatelolco by Diego Rivera. Palacio Nacional, Mexico City. Source: Diego Rivera/CC BY-SA 3.0

Daily Life of the Aztecs: A Blend of Agriculture, Hierarchy, and Culture

In the history of the Mesoamerican civilizations, the Aztecs occupy a major position. A lot of their history is known to us, mostly because of their contact with the Spanish conquistadors. But we...
Kali, Hindu goddess of death. Source: super / Adobe Stock.

10 Most Fearsome Gods in Ancient Mythology

Throughout the long ages of our collective history, gods and goddesses have been revered, worshiped, and feared . Ancient mythologies from around the world are rife with deities who instilled awe and...
Top image:  Moche pottery depicting copulation.  Museo Larco – Lima, Perú

Sexuality and Nudity in Ancient Mesoamerica

The ancient civilizations of Mesoamerica left behind a rich artistic legacy that continues to captivate and intrigue modern scholars and enthusiasts. Among the myriad of themes that Mesoamerican art...
Experimental models of Aztec death whistles

Scientists Recreate Aztec Death Whistle’s Deathly Noise

Experts have recreated the terrifying sound of the Aztec Death Whistle - using a 3D printer. The whistle's design is based on the skull-shaped originals found in Mexico in the 1990s. Historically,...
Chinampa, Mexico. Source: Maleny / Adobe Stock.

Saving Chinampas, Mexico’s Ancient Floating Farms (Video)

South of Mexico City lies Xochimilco, an area renowned for its distinctive floating farms, locally referred to as " Chinampas ." These floating islands have been a part of Mexico's agricultural...
Head and shoulders of an Egyptian mummy, the best-known of mummification methods.        Source: Andrea Izzotti/Adobe Stock

7 Fascinating Ways Ancient Cultures Mummified Their Dead

Mummies have long captured the imagination of people all over the world. These preserved remains offer a fascinating glimpse into the lives, beliefs, and traditions of ancient cultures. From the...
Burial of the adult from the Teotihuacan village in Mexico. Source: Marisol Bautista Roquez/ INAH

Archaeologists in Mexico Uncover Remains of a Teotihuacan Village Almost 1,600 Years Old

Archaeologists from the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) have made a groundbreaking discovery in Mexico City's Tlatelolco area - the remains of a Teotihuacan village dating back...
The Monolith of Tlaloc. Source: Public Domain

The Monolith of Tlaloc: Did Moving This Massive Stone Statue Incite the Fury of the Aztec God?

The Monolith of Tlaloc is a giant stone carving of the Aztec god of rain, water, lightning, and agriculture, Tlaloc. This monolith was once located near the town of Coatlinchan (which translates as ‘...
Aztec coin in sand. Source: breakermaximus / Adobe Stock.

Montezuma's Treasure: Unveiling the Shadow Cave Mystery (Video)

A secret tunnel known as the Shadow Cave has been discovered, potentially leading to Montezuma's Treasure . Following the conquest of the Aztec Empire by Hernan Cortes, Emperor Montezuma and his...
Gold Aztec coin. Source: breakermaximus / Adobe Stock.

Is Montezuma's Treasure in Arizona? (Video)

Montezuma's gold is a legendary treasure said to have been hidden by the Aztec emperor Montezuma II during the Spanish conquest of Mexico. According to folklore, the treasure consists of vast amounts...
Pile of human skulls. Source: papi8888 / Adobe Stock.

The Dark Discovery of Mexico's Huge Tower of Human Skulls (Video)

Deep within the heart of Mexico City , beneath layers of rubble and dust, lay a dark secret waiting to be unveiled. For years dark tales of a tower of skulls that terrified Spanish Conquistadors were...
Mayan ball game. Source: Sputnik / CC by SA 2.5

Juego de Pelota: Ancient Mayan Sporting Tradition Resurrected (Video)

In Mexico, a dedicated group of athletes is embarking on a remarkable mission: to revive an ancient sporting tradition that pays tribute to the game once cherished by their ancestors. The...
Olmec stone head. Source: marmoset / Adobe Stock.

The Olmecs: Mesoamerica’s Forgotten Mother Culture (Video)

Long before the Maya and Aztecs rose to prominence, the Olmec civilization flourished in Mexico and Central America, leaving behind an enduring legacy. Often hailed as the " mother culture " of...
Canoes have long occupied a special place in the tradition of the indigenous tribes of the Americas, particularly in the northern half. All along the Pacific Northwest, masterfully crafted canoes of many shapes, sizes and forms, were the main mode of transportation until long after European colonization. Adding to this rich history, a team of archaeologists, neighbors and members of the Waccamaw Siouan Tribe successfully recovered a nearly 1,000-year-old canoe from the depths of Lake Waccamaw in south-easte

The Macuahuitl: An Aztec Warrior’s Lethal and Sacred Weapon (Video)

The Macuahuitl was an ancient Aztec weapon that could be used by both shamans and warriors. It was a devastating weapon that was feared by those who encountered it on the battlefield. Made of...
An aristocrat's Robe shows the dragon with 5 claws. (Tibet Metropolitan Museum of Art/CC0)

The Search for Z: Colonel Percy Fawcett’s Obsession with the Golden City (Video)

The legend of El Dorado has captivated the imaginations of explorers , adventurers, and treasure hunters for centuries. But for Colonel Percy Fawcett , it was more than just a myth. He believed in...
From the Codex Mendoza — a father teaches his son the art of war, and a mother teaches her daughter house chores. The speech is in the scroll glyph. (Public Domain)

Codex Mendoza: A Glimpse into the Aztec World

Ever wanted to step back in time to the days of the Aztecs? With the Codex Mendoza, you can. Reading this document takes you back to the mid-16th century, shortly after the Spanish conquest of Mexico...
Mictlantecuhtli, the Aztec god of the dead, was quite busy in 15th century. The cocoliztli epidemic may have killed up to 15 million people! Source: Ivan / Adobe Stock

What was the Deadly Cocoliztli Disease that Decimated Aztec Society?

When the Spanish crossed the Atlantic and started arriving in hordes to begin their conquest and plunder of the Americas, they had a weapon in their arsenal that they had not anticipated: disease...
This ancient Aztec observatory has allowed researchers to discern how the Mexico told time and planned their agricultural calendar. Source: Ben Meissner

Aztec Observatory Temple Reveals Ancient Calendar Secrets

Archaeologists in Mexico have always wondered how sky watchers tracked the sun over time to maintain their farming calendar. Now, a new paper demonstrates how Mexica temples were used, with entire...
Ornamented Skull. The shell and pyrite insets into the sockets must bring some life back into these skulls, but the blades pushed into the nasal cavity and mouth have been suggested to cut off the human's vital breath. The skull covered with stones was probably worn by a priest as a mask. (Denis Jarvis / CC by SA 2.0)

16 Creepy Masks Made from Real Human Skulls

How would you feel placing a mask on your face that was made from a real human skull? Would you feel differently if it were the skull of a family member, or perhaps an enemy? For many ancient people...
Left: Standing nearly 9 feet tall, this Coatlicue statue is one of the Aztec Empire's largest surviving sculptures. As was typical of Aztec sculptures, all sides of the statue were decorated.    Right: A modern reimagining of Coatlicue. Source: Left: Luidger / CC BY SA 3.0; Center: Public Domain), Right: Public Domain

Coatlicue: Fearsome Fertility Goddess of the Aztecs

Coatlicue was one of the most important gods in the Aztec pantheon. Not only was she the goddess of fertility, but she also gave birth to Huitzilopochtli, the Aztec god of war and the sun. Her high...
The discovery of a cache of Aztec ritual offerings, including the remains of a Mexican wolf dressed as a warrior (seen here), has lead experts to believe they may have found the tomb of an Aztec king. Source: Mirsa Islas / INAH

Sacrificed Animals Dressed as Warriors Point to Tomb of Aztec King

Researchers conducting excavations in Mexico City found a series of boxes containing Aztec treasures. Inside they discovered a cache of Aztec ritual offerings, including child remains, precious...
Left; Aztec god Xochipilli as described in the 16th century Codex Borgia, Right; Xochipilli, Aztec terracotta Lombards Museum. Source: Left; Public Domain Right; CC BY 3.0

Xōchipilli: Fun-Loving Aztec God of Sex, Drugs, and Music

The Aztecs were known for their many unique deities, but one of the most fascinating is Xōchipilli, the Aztec god of flowers, love, art, and fertility, as well as patron of homosexuality. Xōchipilli’...
A modern depiction of the Aztec fertility goddess Tlaltecuhtli. Source: Public Domain

Tlaltecuhtli: Fearsome Fertility Goddess of the Aztecs

Tlaltecuhtli was a Mesoamerican earth goddess predominantly worshiped by the Aztec people. In most religions, fertility goddesses are depicted as the culture's epitome of beauty, like Aphrodite of...

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