Home Books Handbook to Life in the Aztec World

Handbook to Life in the Aztec World
  • Authored by: Manuel Aguilar-Moreno
  • From the Series: Handbook to Life
  • Trim Size: 7-3/8 x 9-1/4
  • ISBN-10: 0816056730
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-8160-5673-6
  • Status: In Stock
  • List Price: $70.00
  • Imprint: Facts On File
  • Published: 12/01/2005
  • Dewey Number: 972
  • Reading Level: Grades 9 and up
  • Pages: 464


Ever since the violent end of the empire in 1521, the marvels and mysteries of Aztec Mexico have intrigued us. And in recent years, astounding discoveries from the excavation of the Templo Mayor in the heart of Mexico City have taught us even more about this fascinating culture. The increasing recognition that the achievements of Mesoamerican civilizations were among the most sophisticated of the ancient world has led to a demand for introductions to the basic methods and theories of archaeologists, art historians, and ethnohistorians working throughout the region.

Gathering the results of recent archaeological discoveries and scholarly research into a single volume, Handbook to Life in the Aztec World unlocks the secrets of this great empire. Organized in a highly accessible format, it contains in-depth coverage of Aztec history, geography, foods, trades, arts, games, wars, political systems, class structure, religious practices, trading networks, writings, architecture, science, and more. Detailed descriptions and more than 165 original line drawings pair with high-quality photographs, maps, and tables to bring the Aztec world to life, making this volume a perfect addition to any personal collection, classroom, or library.

Coverage includes:

  • Mesoamerican Civilizations and Aztec Archaeology
  • Evolution of Aztec Civilization
  • Geography of the Aztec World
  • Society and Government
  • Warfare
  • Religion, Cosmology, and Mythology
  • Funerary Beliefs and Customs
  • Aztec Art
  • Aztec Architecture
  • Nahuatl Literature
  • The Calendar, Astronomy, and Mathematics
  • Economy, Industry, and Trade
  • Daily Life
  • The Aztec after the Conquest and Today.


168 black-and-white photographs and illustrations. 7 maps. Index. Appendix. Bibliography. Timeline. Tables.

About the Author(s)

Manuel Aguilar-Moreno is associate professor of art history at California State University in Los Angeles. He obtained a Ph.D. in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. A renowned expert on pre-Columbian civilizations and the colonial history of Mexico, Dr. Aguilar-Moreno has directed numerous research projects in Mexico. His publications cover a wide range of subjects, including Mesoamerican art and history, colonial art and history of Mexico, funerary art, and the pre-Columbian ballgame.

Foreword author John M.D. Pohl, Ph.D., is the Peter Jay Sharp Curator and Lecturer in the Art of the Ancient Americas at the Princeton University Art Museum. He is an eminent authority on American Indian civilizations and has directed numerous archaeological excavations in Mexico, Central America, Canada, and the United States. Dr. Pohl has published extensively on subjects ranging from human origins to the rise of the Aztec empire, and specializes in the decipherment of ancient pictographic writing systems.

Reviews and Awards

“The general reader will find the book engaging and, if looking for specific information, convenient to use. The book makes a valuable contribution to our understanding of ancient American civilizations.”
American Reference Books Annual

"[A] comprehensive and readable study..."
SLJ Curriculum Connections

"A comprehensive, engaging examination of Aztec history and culture based on recent archaeological discoveries and excavations in Mexico City. Meticulously organized ...accessible information...readable format...A remarkable look at the grandeur of an ancient civilization."
School Library Journal

"...in-depth coverage…Well-chosen photographs, maps, and diagrams complement the highly-accessible text."

"High school to college-level students will find Handbook to Life in the Aztec World a fine reference."
Midwest Book Review

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