The Sun Stone (or The Calendar Stone) (Aztec)

The Sun Stone (or The Calendar Stone), Aztec, reign of Moctezuma II (1502–20), discovered in 1790 at the southeastern edge of the Plaza Mayor (Zocalo) in Mexico City, stone (unfinished), 358 cm diameter x 98 cm depth (Museo Nacional de Antropología)


Terms and key concepts

  • polychromy
  • Mexica (or Aztec) understanding of the creation of the cosmos
  • Tonatiuh?
  • Nahui-Ollin
  • Mesoamerican calendar
  • Tenochtitlan
  • glyphs

Additional resources

The Sun Stone on Google Arts and Culture

Smarthistory images for teaching and learning:

More Smarthistory images…

Cite this page as: Dr. Lauren Kilroy-Ewbank and Dr. Beth Harris, "The Sun Stone (or The Calendar Stone) (Aztec)," in Smarthistory, August 9, 2015, accessed May 29, 2023,