DECEMBER 17, 1790


The Aztec Calendar Stone, also called the “Sun Stone,” one of the most famous objects in world archaeology, was created during the last years of the Aztec kingdom under the rule of Moctezuma II [see June 29], before the conquest of 1519-21.  The Stone is a massive depiction of Aztec mythology.  It is now believed to have been laid vertically and was a cuauhxicalli meaning “eagle vessel.”  This is where hearts would have been placed after removal from a sacrificial offering.  The Stone was buried in the Zocalo (the main square of Mexico City) around the second half of the sixteenth century and was discovered during repairs to the Mexico City Cathedral.  The Stone became an important national symbol during the Porfirio Diaz era when it was used in the movement to unify the states of Mexico into a nation.  One of the most prominent symbols that represent Mexico, embodying deep cultural heritage, the Stone is currently located in the Museo Nacional De Antropoloía in Mexico City. 

Source:  Caleb A. Zavala, “Aztec Calendar Stone,” Historical Mexico.  Retrieved 7/23/2019,
Photo:  Juan Carlos Fonseca Mata, 6/26/2019.  Permissive use under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International,

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