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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
El Pueblito in Municipality of La Corregidora, Querétaro, Mexico — The Central Highlands
 

The Altar of the Skulls

 
 
The Altar of the Skulls Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. Makali Bruton, July 23, 2017
1. The Altar of the Skulls Marker
Inscription.  

Altar de los Cráneos
Edificio cuandrangular de diez metros por lado, en su construcción original tuvo una fachada de tipo talud tablero, forrada con lápidas de cantera, lisas y con relieves policromados. Muestra evidencia de haber tenida escalinatas en cada uno de sus lados. Su nombre proviene de dos ofrendas de cráneos y mandíbulas depositadas al interior del altar. La ofrenda consta de más de 50 individuos adultos de sexo masculino, entre 18 y 40 años, posiblemente guerreros de linaje. La ofrenda, localizada bajo la escalinata oriente, contenía algunas mandíbulas con dientes mutilados ornamentalmente, asociados a braseros de cerámica, cuentas de piedra verde y concha quemada. En la superficie del altar fue encontrada otra ofrenda de cráneos trofeo, practica ritual generalizada entre los grupos norteños de Mesoamérica. Este hallazgo representa una de las evidencias más antiguosa de altares conocidos como tzompantli, estructura creada por los toltecas alrededor del año 900 d.C. y utilizada posteriormente en sitios mexicas.

Pie de dibujos:
Reconstrucción del Altar de los Cráneos

Ofrenda de cráneos
The Altar of the Skulls Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. Makali Bruton, March 3, 2019
2. The Altar of the Skulls Marker
The marker was reprinted but remains in its previous location.
y mandíbulas

Escultura de la fachada Diez águila, Sahumador tipo reloj de arena y Concha spondylus

English translation:
The Altar of the Skulls
This quadrangular building, ten meters on each side, originally had a talud-tablero (sloping panel) style facade and was lined with smooth, quarried stones with polychrome reliefs. It shows evidence of having steps on each side. Its name comes from two offerings of skulls and jaws deposited inside the altar. The offerings consisted of more than 50 adult male individuals, between 18 and 40 years old, possibly important warriors. This offering, located under the eastern stairway, contained some jaws with ornamentally mutilated teeth, together with ceramic braziers, beads of green stone and burnt shell. On the surface of the altar was found another trophy skull offering, a ritual practice that was widespread among the northern groups of Mesoamerica. This find represents one of the most ancient evidence of altars known as tzompantli, a structure created by the Toltec around 900 AD and subsequently used in Mexican (Aztec) sites.

Captions:
An artistic reconstruction of the Altar of the Skulls

A photograph of the offering of skulls and jaws

A Ten Eagle sculpture on the façade, an ‘hourglass’ type censer and a Concha spondylus shell

Copyright
The Altar of the Skulls and Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. Makali Bruton, July 23, 2017
3. The Altar of the Skulls and Marker
2017 HMdb.org, all rights reserved for the translation unless otherwise noted.
 
Location. 20° 33.035′ N, 100° 26.627′ W. Marker is in El Pueblito, Querétaro, in Municipality of La Corregidora. Marker can be reached from Calle Hidalgo just north of Camino al Cerrito, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. This marker is south of the pyramid at the El Cerrito Archaeological Site. Marker is in this post office area: El Pueblito, Querétaro 76915, Mexico. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Platform and Pyramid (within shouting distance of this marker); The "Little Fort" (within shouting distance of this marker); The Plaza of the Sculptures (about 90 meters away, measured in a direct line); The Building of the Four Altars (about 90 meters away); The Plaza of the Dancers (about 120 meters away); Obsidian Altar (about 210 meters away); El Cerrito ("The Little Hill") (approx. 0.2 kilometers away); The Earth and its Cosmic Paths (approx. 0.2 kilometers away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in El Pueblito.
 
The Altar of the Skulls Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. Makali Bruton, July 23, 2017
4. The Altar of the Skulls Marker
In this view it is possible to see the steps of the altar, with the marker to the right. The pyramid of the site is further up the hill to the right (north).
The Altar of the Skulls and Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. Makali Bruton, March 3, 2019
5. The Altar of the Skulls and Marker
 
More. Search the internet for The Altar of the Skulls.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 14, 2019. This page originally submitted on July 26, 2017, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. This page has been viewed 82 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on July 26, 2017, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico.   2. submitted on May 14, 2019, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico.   3, 4. submitted on July 26, 2017, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico.   5. submitted on May 14, 2019, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico.
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