UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Aztec-Mexica Temple R of Tlatelolco Moreiras Reynaga, Diana


This temple was erected by the Mexica (Aztecs) living in Tlatelolco as one of the temples in their ceremonial-ritual complex. The Temple R was dedicated to their wind deity, Ehécatl-Quetzalcoatl. This deity was linked to the main Mexica god Tlaloc, in charge of rain and earth's fertility. As such, ceremonies associated with fertility, rain, and the successful maintenance of agricultural cycles were carried out at this temple. In the 1980s, a team of INAH specialists encountered the remains of several individuals during their excavations at this temple. The individuals, including infants, children and adults, had been sacrificed and placed in particular burial contexts: on the ground and inside pots with several artifacts and ecofacts. This sacrificial event has been linked to a one-time ritual ceremony during the massive drought of 1454- 1457 CE (also known as the "famine of 1 Rabbit" based on the Mexica calendar; during the reign of Motecuhzoma I).

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