Sacred Shrine of the Cholula Pyramid,"old Popocatapetl" in the Distance, Mexico

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tiff scanned file from original glass slide
Cholula was the sacred city of the Aztecs. Here on this shrine the Indians offered human beings to appease the wrath of their gods. Next to city of Mexico, it was the center of the social and official life of the Aztec kingdom. In Cortes' report to the king of Spain, he said that he saw 400 temples in Cholula. But the early explorers often set down their fancies instead of real facts. It is now believe that Cortes put one too many ciphers in his number, and that he really saw not more than 40. At any rate, he reported that he destroyed all of them, and commanded the natives to build a Christian church on the site of each. There can be no doubt, however, of his destruction of 3,000 of the natives who came unarmed to meet him. The pyramid from the top of which you are looking is 1,440 feet square at the base, and 200 feet high. Like the other Mexican pyramids it is built in steps. In the valley you see the present city of Cholula in the province of Puebla. It contains about 10,000 people. When Cortes first visited it, it had 15 times this number. In the background you see the peak of stately Popocatapetl (p-p´ kä-t´ pt'l), 17,748 feet above sea level. How many miles high is it? Like so many of the Mexican peaks, it is volcanic. It no longer emits fire and lava, but it pours forth great flows of sulphur. The crater is a mile across and one-fifth of a mile deep. On its sloping sides the native Mexican work at removing the sulphur. They carry it to the top of the mountain, where it is poured into troughs that lead it to the valley. Find Popocatapetl on the map of Mexico. Keystone ID: 10865 Note: All titles, descriptions, and location coordinates are from the original Keystone Slide documentation as supplied by the Keystone View Company. No text has been edited or changed.
Copyright by the Keystone View Company. The original slides are housed in McConnell Library's Special Collections.