Architectural patterns at three aztec- period sites in morelos, mexico

Michael E. Smith, Patricia Aguirre, Cynthia Heath-Smith, Kathryn Hirst, Scott O’Mack, Jeffrey Price

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Excavations conducted by the Postclassic Morelos Archaeological Project in western Morelos, Mexico, have recovered data on stone architecture during the Late Postclassic, or Aztec, period at three sites: Cuexcomate (a town settlement); Capilco (a village); and Site 3 (a farmstead). Whereas the village site exhibits only one class of structures (ground-level houses), the town has a diversity of architectural classes including ground-level houses, platform houses, temple platforms, circular structures, and rock piles. These categories are described and the nature of inter-class and intra-class architectural variability is explored. Our results shed light on the nature of the Aztec peasantry, suggesting a high level of social complexity in rural provincial areas.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)185-203
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Field Archaeology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology


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