Artifact Distribution Patterns Among Aztec Period Households in the Coatlan del Rio Valley, Morelos, Mexico

Author(s): Dennis Lewarch

Year: 2015


Using assemblages in over 4,000 4-x-4-m surface collection units from eight Aztec period sites in the Coatlan del Rio Valley of western Morelos, Mexico, I analyze the valley-wide distribution of plain ceramics, decorated ceramics, lithic artifacts, spindle whorls, and figurines in over 300 household middens to define functional artifact sets analogous to the "bundles of goods and services" of economic geographers. Cluster analysis, multidimensional scaling, and network analysis quantify flow of ceramic classes and lithics among households and group ceramic and lithic functional classes into activity suites. Groups of functional classes reflect universal household maintenance activities as well as manufacturing of a variety of craft goods for both household use and market exchange. Distribution of plain and decorated ceramic classes and lithic materials and tools among households provides evidence of various provisioning mechanisms, including market exchange. Results contribute to the increasing corpus of research documenting complexity of Aztec period economic organization in the tributary provinces of the Aztec empire.

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Cite this Record

Artifact Distribution Patterns Among Aztec Period Households in the Coatlan del Rio Valley, Morelos, Mexico. Dennis Lewarch. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397380)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;