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Persistence of Aztec Religious Belief Materialized in the Early Colonial Religious Architecture of the Central Mexican Highlands

Author(s): Maria Stapleton

Year: 2015

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Late Classic conceptualizations of sacred space, cosmologies, calendrical systems, and religious symbols combined to form a powerful and enduring core of indigenous religious beliefs that persisted well into the Early Colonial period in the central highlands of Mexico. Indigenous builders and artisans reconstructed their temples, now Christian, within pre-existing Aztec sacred space, often following indigenous alignments of cosmological significance. The elaborate facades of these churches were sites for the public display of potent indigenous religious symbols and clear references to the Aztec ritual calendar and belief system. The materialization of pre-Hispanic religious belief in the form of Early Colonial religious architecture was a widespread phenomenon that took hold in smaller rural religious spaces as well as those of larger urban centers. The authors' findings from in-situ research of such architecture in rural communities in the central Mexican highlands provide persuasive evidence of the persistence of the materialization of Aztec religious belief in the Early Colonial religious architecture of the highlands of central Mexico.

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Persistence of Aztec Religious Belief Materialized in the Early Colonial Religious Architecture of the Central Mexican Highlands. Maria Stapleton. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 398387)


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Spatial Coverage

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

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America