On pre-Hispanic Amerinds, 3

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Eduardo Matos Moctezuma is a prominent Mexican archaeologist that has directed excavations at the Great Pyramid of Tenochtitlan. In his article “La Muerte del Hombre por el Hombre” in El Sacrificio Humano en la Tradición Religiosa Mesoamericana (pages 43-64), he includes fifteen illustrations of ancient codexes, of which I’ll reproduce only a couple of them.

After quoting the details of Maya human sacrifice recounted by Diego de Landa (1524-1579), a Spanish bishop of Yucatán, Matos Moctezuma writes (my translation) that “in some Mixtec codexes this practice is shown as in the Codex Borgia, where we have images of the extraction of the heart, and also in the Codex Laud:

Codex-Laud-1

A few pages later the archeologist describes another form of sacrifice that was popular in both Teotihuacan and in the Maya world, decapitation: “Also in various codexes we see images of decapitation, as in the Codex Vaticanus B, pre-Hispanic, in which page 24 a figure can be seen of a bat with outstretched arms holding in each of his hands a bloody human head. It corresponds to the eastern trecenas [13-day period used in pre-Columbian Mesoamerican calendars] and reads like: ‘They are time of vampire Xolotl, the deadly lethal bat that cuts heads and takes off hearts’.”

Codex-Vaticanus-1

I don’t want to repeat what I already said about pre-Hispanic human sacrifice in The Return of Quetzalcoatl. I want to add something new. And since art is the royal road to enter the soul of a totally alien culture, I find it convenient to include these images of how the books authored by the representatives of the high culture in the Amerind world looked like before they were conquered by the white man.

Codex_Zouche-Nuttall_01

The above is a highly-pixelated image. Click on it to see the details (click again for even more detailed close-up). I may be no expert in deciphering such codexes but a central image on the left page looks like a grey-faced man holding a decapitated head with blood pouring under it.

Published in: on December 1, 2013 at 1:24 pm  Comments (1)  

One Comment

  1. I am vastly amused by your pages… Funnily enough, there is a genetic or “chosen european people” edge to your text. The sacrificial information is fascinating…

    I live in France, and if i go up the mountain 20 miles away to pic-saint-sabin, There is a rock on top of an old fort from 2500 years ago celts, which is designed to let fluid flow in streams around a central pooling area. You can say it was for making flower soups, on the mountain peak, but probably it was for cutting up groups of captives and making them scream into the cusp of the clouds and high above the flat rhone valley…

    If i go 20km the other way, there is a bath on the mountain top, a stone with a bath cut into it, “la baignoire des gaulois” which was either for flower baths, or milk baths, or blood baths… whatever you think would be most precious. … So i turn my attention to europe… Perhaps the 10.000 slaves that were crucified on the road sides leading to Rome after the spartacus rebellion??? that’s alot of dudes on poles being sacrificed…

    And the blood bath parties and christian dismemberment cinemas, and so on… and Nero is a bit rough too… And the wonderful russian “death bus” where the exhaust fumes were directed into the lorrie’s back end. In that way, you could collect 20 intellectuals, put them in the bus, drive 30 minutes to the graveyard, and drop them off… they got rid of masses of people like that…

    Genocides everywhere, 20 million purged under Stalin wasn’t it? 4000 civics every day with hitler, not at the peak of the solution… one commander could jot down 100 people a day that he managed to get in front of the firing squad on patrol, leaving aside the gas chamber. What was the name of that hungarian noblewoman required a supply of young girls to torture… hum bavaru or something, she would take a long while to make them scream and if they were not responsive enough after, she would put them in a cage above her head and poke them with a speak and bathe in the blood… we have churches made of bones, we had Vlad the impaler who used horses or gravity to impale all the captives from all the wars that challenged him, in the bum, steaks large like jars, and who liked cutting off pieces of humans who depressed him. Oh the wonders of the human imagination…


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