‘The return of the Aztecs’ explores Aztec culture in modern Mexico. Aztecs in Spanish colonial times still maintained their crafts well into the seventeenth century, and rejected Spanish technological advances. Christian priests sought to eliminate Mesoamerican spirituality, but actually ended up combining Spanish Catholicism with the indigenous culture, evident in the Virgin of Guadalupe. The excavation of Tenochtitlan in the 1970s and 80s sparked a massive surge of interest in Aztec culture, and artists began to reclaim their previously lost heritage. In the United States the Aztecs were taught as ‘inferior’ to the great European empires. However, the Aztec language and symbolism present in Mexico has spread to North America.