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Ahuitzotl in the Codex Mendoza.

Ahuitzotl (Nahuatl: āhuitzotl, pronounced [aːˈwitsotɬ]) was the eighth Aztec ruler, the Hueyi Tlatoani, of the city of Tenochtitlan. He was responsible for much of the expansion of the Mexica domain, and consolidated the empire's power after a weak performance by his predecessor. He took power as Tlatoani in the year 7 Rabbit (1486), after the death of his predecessor Tízoc.

Perhaps the greatest known military leader of Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica, Ahuitzotl began his reign by suppressing a Huastec rebellion, and then swiftly more than doubled the size of lands under Aztec dominance. He conquered the Mixtec, Zapotec, and other peoples from Mexico's Pacific coast down to the western part of Guatemala. Ahuitzotl also supervised a major rebuilding of Tenochtitlan on a grander scale including the expansion of the Great Pyramid or Templo Mayor in the year 8 Reed (1487). Ahuitzotl died in the year 10 Rabbit (1502) and was succeeded by his nephew, Moctezuma II.

Ahuitzotl took his name from the animal Ahuitzotl, but it appears the Aztecs thought of it as a creature in its own right, and not merely a mythical beast representing the king.




On 3 August 2007, Mexican archaeologists announced discovery of what is believed to be the tomb of Ahuitzotl beneath a sculpture of Tlaltecuhtli near the Zócalo in Mexico City.[2][3]



  • Townsend, Richard F. (2000) The Aztecs. revised ed. Thames and Hudson, New York.
  • Hassig, Ross (1988) Aztec Warfare: Imperial Expansion and Political Control. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman.
  • Weaver, Muriel Porter (1993). The Aztecs, Maya, and Their Predecessors: Archaeology of Mesoamerica (3rd ed. ed.). San Diego: Academic Press. ISBN 0012639990. 

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