Mexican Archaeological Wonder on a Banknote

17 Jun 2020  Wed

The first banknotes issued by the Mexican state were produced in 1823 by Emperor Agustin de Iturbide. Several Mexican banknotes bore motifs related to the Aztecs or other pre-Hispanic cultures. The banknote shown above is a 1 Peso banknote issued in the year 1961 which depicts the Mexican Sunstone. The Aztec Calendar Stone, better known in the archaeological literature as the Aztec Sun Stone (Piedra del Sol in Spanish), is an enormous basalt disk covered with hieroglyphic carvings of calendar signs and other images referring to the Aztec creation myth. The so-called Aztec Calendar Stone was not a calendar, but most likely a ceremonial container or altar linked to the Aztec sun god, Tonatiuh, and festivities dedicated to him. The 1 Peso banknote shown above depicts Aztec calendar stone or Mexica Sunstone (Piedra del Sol) excavated in the Zocalo, Mexico City's main square, on the 17th of December 1790, whereas the reverse depicts Independence Monument in Mexico City. Image Courtesy:

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