They were religious events first. The Aztecs believed that their gods got their sustenance from human sacrifice; and one of the basic duties of Religion is caring for your gods. The most important of these sacrifices were carried out during the 18 monthly festivals of the Solar Year.
One of these, to give you an example, was the Tlacaxipehualiztli, the Festival of the Flaying of Men, celebrated at spring equinox before the rainy season, one of the most brutal and complex.
[Read more…] about What Were Aztec Sacrifices Ritual Actually Like?