The Early Modern World, C. 1300–1600

Art in the New World

What is the significance of the Aztec eagle-man?

The “eagle-man” (c. 1440–1469) is a sixty-seven-inch high, fired clay sculpture depicting a youthful man wearing an eagle-shaped helmet and long, winged sleeves. The upper portion of the sculpture is well rendered, but overall, the body is simplistic, and it was possibly dressed in military garments. The sculpture perhaps depicts an Aztec warrior. Aztec warriors were known for their fearlessness and ferocity.

Also called the Sun Stone, the Aztec Calendar Stone weighs twenty-five tons. The circular stone is carved with symbols that represent Aztec concepts of time and cosmology.


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