Aztec Mathematics

Aztec Mathematics
The people of the Aztec Empire were an ethic group in central
Mexico who dominated from 1325-1521 AD. Their language
Nahuatl is still spoken today in the mountains of Mexico.
The Aztec civilization built large pyramids and complex cities.
Their capital city Tenochtitlan was built on the site of today’s
Mexico City. They were conquered by Cortez in 1521.
The Aztec used a base 20 system.
Additive number system: just add up the value of the
Notation: glyphs included a dot, flag, feather and bag
of incense
Face values
Each notation has a face value: 1, 20, 400, 8000
Place value
There are NO place values; this is not a positional
system. You just add up the values of the pictures
you see.
2009 would be written as
Remember, each feather has a face value of
400, each dot has a face value of 1. There
are no place values, so this system has no
expanded form. All together, the symbols
add up to 2009.
Now you try one!
Aztec. Retrieved January 10, 2010, from
Aztec Daily Life. Retrieved January 10, 2010, from
Kellermeier, J. (2009). Aztec Tribute Record Numerals. Retrieved
January 10, 2010, from
Siddiqui, A. (2004). Aztec Number System. Retrieved January 10,
2010, from

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