Friday, January 21, 2005


Aztec Blood Libel

Were the Aztec really bloodthirsty, or was that just the Spanish propaganda of the day?

Looks like blood:

It has long been a matter of contention: Was the Aztec and Mayan practice of human sacrifice as widespread and horrifying as history books say? Or did Spanish conquerors overstate it to make the cultures appear primitive?

In recent years, archeologists have uncovered mounting evidence that corroborates the Spanish accounts in substance, if not number.

Using high-tech forensic tools, archeologists are proving that such sacrifices often involved children and a broad array of intentionally brutal killings
I remember reading Marvin Harris's view of the subject, many years ago. He felt that a large part of the purpose of the killings was to obtain precious meat with which to reward the ruling classes for their support. The theory seemed initially far-fetched, but he made a good case. I mean ... what did happen to the bodies after they were sacrificed?