Concept

New Fire ceremony

Summary
The New Fire Ceremony was an Aztec ceremony performed once every 52 years—a full cycle of the Aztec “calendar round”—in order to stave off the end of the world. The calendar round was the combination of the 260-day ritual calendar and the 365-day annual calendar. The New Fire Ceremony was part of the “Binding of the Years” tradition among the Aztecs. The Binding of the Years occurred every 52 years, or every 18,980 days as a part of the combination of the two calendars. Arithmetically, the duration of the Calendar Round is the least common multiple of 260 and 365; 18,980 is 73 × 260 Tzolkʼin days and 52 × 365 Haabʼ days derived from the Maya calendar. During this time the Aztecs believed the sun might not come back. The Aztecs wanted to symbolically and literally purify and "renew" their lives for the beginning of the new 52 year cycle. Therefore, many items such as hearth stones were thrown out in order to not be associated with the old cycle in any way. They used this time as a "s
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