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 January 18, 2022,