An Empire of Water and Stone: Aztec Kingship and Sacred Landscapes

Author(s): Katherine McCarthy

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "SAA 2019: General Sessions" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

My project will center around the Acuecuexco Aqueduct Relief (also referred to as the Ahuitzotl’s Aqueduct Relief) and its implications as a monument celebrating a public works project by an Aztec emperor. Only one other comparable example is known to date: the Chapultepec carving of Montezuma II. Although the later carving has received significantly more attention in the scholarship, both works remain open for further study and interpretation. Neither have been fully analyzed as public works projects connected to the influx of water to the capital city. Due to the incredible value of water to the physical and cultural stability of the empire, I hope to build off of Barbara Mundy’s studies on water in the Aztec Empire to fully understand the significance of these monuments to the city and the image of the rulers they portray. I will also seek to follow the monuments throughout history in a trans-conquest study, connecting the ancient propaganda through the colonial period into its modern manifestations. This paper will aim to shine a light on these monuments and contextualize their roles as public monuments and negotiating points between Aztec kingship and sacred landscape.

Cite this Record

An Empire of Water and Stone: Aztec Kingship and Sacred Landscapes. Katherine McCarthy. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 449525)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 18.48 ; max long: -94.087; max lat: 23.161 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24505