MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Archeologists say a giant, ornate carving of an Aztec god recently unveiled in downtown Mexico City could be a massive headstone in honor of one of the civilization’s last rulers.
Scientists say the 12.4 ton stone cutting, which is covered with a vast, heavily detailed full-body engraving of earth god Tlaltecuhtli, is one of the most important Aztec finds ever.
The 11-foot long monolith was first made public in October. It is broken into several pieces but otherwise in excellent condition, archeologists said.
They have spent weeks scraping dirt and debris from the piece and now say it may be the headstone of Ahuizotl, the eighth Aztec ruler, whose successor Moctezuma II governed at the start of the Spanish conquest of Mexico.
The headstone is decorated with the carved image of a deity with a giant male head ringed by masses of curly hair and a sharp extended tongue representing a stream of blood.
Skulls and crossed bones surround the body, as well as a rabbit and several dots thought to be a time stamp dating the sculpture to 1502.
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