Aztec Golden Wolf
As I understand it, modern Mexico City isn’t a nice place. No slight intended; I’ve never been there. There may be parts that are lovely. I’m only going by things I’ve read and things I was told by a former resident of that metropolis, who described it as “hell on earth.” His words, not mine. Again, I’ve never been there. My information is secondhand. If the criticisms are true, though, it’s sad, because Mexico City used to be the site of the Aztec Capital Tenochtitlan, which was, if historical records are to be believed, remarkably advanced relative to the time of its existence, beautiful and grandiose, and filled with sacred sites. One such sacred site contained the bones of a wolf, adorned with some of the finest gold ever recovered.
You may be thinking, if the Aztec priests were willing to bury so much gold with the carcass of the wolf after they sacrificed it, it must have been an important wolf. And you would be right. That particular wolf may not have been unusual, but it represented something vital: Huitzilopochtli (don’t try to pronounce it), the Aztec sun god and god of war. Wolves also played an important role in Aztec theology, as it was believed wolves served as guides to warriors killed in battle, helping them to reach the next world.
The wolf was sacrificed somewhere around the year 1500 AD. It may have had its heart cut out, as was done to human sacrificial victims, in addition to being buried with a lot of bling.