Paleopathology analysis of animal bones found inside the Templo Mayor offerings


In the excavations conducted by the Templo Mayor Project during the last decade, more than 100 individuals –including birds and mammals- have been found. Thanks to interdisciplinary research combining biology, ecology and veterinarian medicine approaches, it has been possible to study bone anomalies produced by different diseases and trauma in several specimens, such as golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos), roseate spoonbills (Platalea ajaja), jaguars (Panthera onca) and wolves (Canis lupus). These animals were sacrificed during Ahuítzotl’s reign (AD 1486-1502) and deposited into the offerings we analyzed. In this presentation we will discuss the pathological bone alterations produced by the interaction between humans and animals. The results of the analysis suggest that it is very likely that the animals were kept under captivity. Furthermore, the study of animal captivity has allowed us to deepen our understanding of the Mexica society, making it possible to reach new interpretations concerning the origin of the ritual goods and the power of the Mexica Empire at the end of the 15th Century.

Cite this Record

Paleopathology analysis of animal bones found inside the Templo Mayor offerings. Israel Elizalde Mendez, Amaranta Argüelles Echevarría, Ximena Chávez Balderas. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429850)


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 13178