Scientists Discovered Much More Horrible Truth Behind 500-Year-Old Aztec Tower Of Human Skulls

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The famous Aztec “tower of skulls” in Mexico City, after having undergone archaeological excavations, have revealed a new part containing 119 human skulls. The discovery escalated the total number of skulls found in the late 15th-century structure, named Huey Tzompantli, to more than 600.

Initially found 5 years ago by archaeological experts from the Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), Huey Tzompantli is thought to be one of the seven that once existed in the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlán.

Source: Reuters

The tower is situated adjacent to the remnants of the Templo Mayor, a 14th– and 15th-century ceremonial temple devoted to the war god Huitzilopochtli and the rain god Tlaloc. Discovered in the eastern side of the structure, there were at least 3 craniums from children among the new skulls. The remnants are distinguished thanks to the size and teeth development.

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Formerly, experts had believed that the skulls in the tower were from defeated male soldiers, but latest examinations indicate that some were from women and children. “Although we cannot determine how many of these individuals were warriors, perhaps some were captives destined for sacrificial ceremonies,” says archaeologist Barrera Rodríguez.

Source: Reuters

“We do know that they were all made sacred, that is, they were turned into gifts for the gods or even personifications of the deities themselves, for which they were dressed and treated as such,” he continues.

In the past, the skulls of the victims of the Aztecs were placed on smaller racks before being relocated to the bigger Huey Tzompantli tower. The bones were bounded together with lime, arranged in to a “large inner-circle that raise[d] and widen[ed] in a succession of rings.”

Source: Reuters

While the tower may seem grisly to modern eyes, INAH notes that Mesoamericans viewed the ritual sacrifice that produced it as a means of keeping the gods alive and preventing the destruction of the universe. “This vision, incomprehensible to our belief system, makes the Huey Tzompantli a building of life rather than death,” according to INAH.

According to Mexican archaeologists, the structure, measuring nearly 16.4 ft. in diameter, was constructed in 3 stages, possibly dating to the time of the Tlatoani Ahuízotl government, between 1486 and 1502. The 18th king of the Aztecs, Ahuízotl, led the empire in the conquest of present-day Guatemala, together with areas along the Gulf of Mexico.

Source: Wikimedia Uploads

Under the rule of Ahuízotl, the territory of Aztecs stretched to the largest scale, and the king also witnessed the remarkable development of Tenochtitlán. He had the temple of Malinalco constructed, a new aqueduct built and a strong bureaucracy established. Records documented the disputed sacrifice of 20,000 war prisoners during the dedication of the new temple in 1847.

The skull racks of the Aztecs were even illustrated in texts on conquering the region by Spanish conquistadors Hernán Cortés, Bernal Díaz del Castillo and Andrés de Tapia, claiming that the Aztecs put tens of thousands of skulls “on a very large theater made of lime and stone, and on the steps of it were many heads of the dead stuck in the lime with the teeth facing outward.”

Source: Reuters

Parts of the towers were demolished by Spanish conquistadors and their Indigenous allies when they invaded Tenochtitlán in the 1500s, scattering the tower’s fragments across the area. The macabre monument was initially found by researchers in 2015 during the restoration of a construction erected on the site of the Aztec capital.

The cylindrical skull rack is placed adjacent to the Metropolitan Cathedral, constructed over the remnants of Templo Mayor, between the 1500s and 1800s. “At every step, the Templo Mayor continues to surprise us,” says Mexican Culture Minister Alejandra Frausto. “The Huey Tzompantli is, without a doubt, one of the most impressive archaeological finds in our country in recent years.”