"Cave, City, And Eagle's Nest" is the culmination of an
international research project and series of conferences, organized
by the Moses Mesoamerican Archive, focused on the sixteenth-century
pictorial manuscript known as the "Mapa de Cuauhtinchan No. 2."
Painted on bark paper and measuring 109 x 204 centimeters, this
extraordinary document contains over seven hundred images and
symbols relating the story of the emergence of ancestors at
Chicomoztoc (Place of Seven Caves), their migration to the sacred
city of Cholula, their foundation and settlement of Cuauhtinchan
(Place of the Eagle's Nest), their community's history and claim
over the surrounding landscape, and many other occurrences along
Dating from around the 1540s, barely two decades after the fall
of the Aztecs, the "mapa" recently underwent extensive physical
analysis, conservation, and a systematic photographic survey. These
rare images--including sixteen full-size sections and a nearly
quarter-size facsimile--accompany fifteen richly illustrated essays
that explore the meanings and uses of the document, its complex
narrative, and the social and ritual memory of an indigenous
community struggling to hold its own in the turbulent atmosphere of
early colonial Mexico.
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