8 interesting facts about the art of the Aztecs

  1. In times of peace, poetry was the only right free time activity of an Aztec warrior. The Aztecs poems were lacking rhyme, but very melodic to ear. There was tradition to read them while standing on the knees, without looking at anyone who was listening.
  2. The main themes of the Aztecs poems, which have survived to the present day, were questions of living and dying along with poetic admiration with beauty of nature. Moreover, there are preserved many religious texts, including: incantations, spells, and prayers for summoning the ghosts.
  3. The Aztecs art was used mainly for religious purpose. The images of gods and sacred animals were the common ones. The best painters were creating religious frescoes for temples. Nevertheless, the Aztecs used poetry not only for religion, but also for capturing everyday situations and secular experiences of people.
  4. The Aztecs written language was represented by the pictography (picture writing) with elements of hieroglyphic writing. Many texts were difficult for reading and comprehension, therefore the Aztecs learned the best poems by heart instead of writing them down. Only when there appeared the Spanish written language, the Aztecs were able to write down some of their poems in Latin.
  5. The Aztecs success in the field of architecture is considered to be the most significant. The height of some Mexican temples measures up to 60 m — this is a record, especially when you consider that they were designed and built like pyramids.
  6. Tattoos were popular at different times among different nations, but the Spanish people found the Aztecs in the heydays of this art. Unmarried boys had “naked” body, without tattoos, but right after marriage, they were free to cover their bodies with different aztec tattoos, according to their social status and traditions.
  7. In comparison with the art of the other Mesoamerican tribes, the main subject of the Aztec’s art was death. In particular, researchers, who came upon the areas of cultural interaction between the Aztecs and the Maya said that there appeared some kind of extreme preoccupation with the theme of death, represented by sculptures and Stella’s which were definitely made by the Aztecs.
  8. The Aztecs were good musicians and they even had the court music schools. Among the main musical instruments of the Aztec tribes were the hollow drum with a hole in the middle of it, sea shells, Gong, and several different types of flutes.

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