Oysters for the Earth Goddess

Digs & Discoveries May/June 2015

(Courtesy Proyecto Templo Mayor/INAH)

Beneath a stone carving of the Aztec earth goddess Tlaltecuhtli inside Mexico City’s Templo Mayor, archaeologists have found an offering containing a variety of artifacts and animal bones, including seashells, from all over the Aztec Empire. A new analysis shows that several of the shells come from mollusks that live on Mexico’s Pacific coast, a possible indicator that the Aztecs expanded their empire to that area during the reign of Ahuitzotl, between 1486 and 1502.

  • Artifacts May/June 2015


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    (Courtesy Joachim Śliwa)
  • Around the World May/June 2015


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    (Wikimedia Commons)
  • Digs & Discoveries May/June 2015

    The Charred Scrolls of Herculaneum

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    (Fotonews/Splash News/Corbis)
  • Features May/June 2015

    The Cult of Amun

    In the epic rivalry between ancient Egypt and Nubia, one god had enduring appeal

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    (Courtesy Y. Guichard © The Berber-Abidiya Archaeological Project)