The 2016-2017 Mesoamerica Center Colloquium Series

Fri. March 24 2017, 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

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Please join us for the March talk in the 2016-2017 Mesoamerica Center Colloquium Series!
Friday March 24th, 4-5 PM, ART 1.120 (Note! Updated location)
"History, Identity and Cosmos: A New Analysis of the Aztec Calendar Stone" by Dr. David Stuart, University of Texas at Austin

Free and open to the public

The Aztec Calendar Stone is perhaps the most iconic image of ancient Mexico and Mesoamerican civilization. But what does it represent? Two centuries of scholarship have produced many interpretations of the image as a solar disc and as an intricate representation of Aztec notions of space-time. But few have considered its role as a monument in the larger urban landscape of ancient Tenochtitlan. This talk will present very new interpretations of the Calendar Stone as an interactive sculpture -- the upper surface of a sacrificial platform once located in the city’s central plaza or marketplace, in front of the Palace of Moteuczoma II (Moctezuma). Much of this new approach rests on seeing the stone’s design as an amalgam of many hieroglyphs, both large and small. Some are temporal, cosmological and mythical references, whereas others serve to identify the central face as the deified image of Moteuczoma II himself. Working in tandem, all of the hieroglyphs provide key linguistic clues for understanding the monument’s original function as marking a conceptual center of both city and cosmos, with the emperor as focus.

Free and open to the public

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