Earlier today* a Tweet by ArchaeoNewsNet saying Ancient petroglyphs found in Mexico brought my attention to this article about ancient Aztatlan petroglyphs being found near Tepic, Mexico, at a site called "Cantil de las animas" (Cliff of the souls).
When I saw the photographs of the Tepic petroglyphs, the upper photo reproduced below, looked like it might represent an eclipse monster. The crescent shaped upper eye-lid framing a totally round eye looks a LOT like a common sun-moon conjunction symbol that is found in many ancient cultures.
I did some quick research, using NASA maps for the paths of solar eclipses, and found that there was a concentration of solar eclipses near Tepic early in the Aztatlan era in the 10th century AD. There was another concentration of solar eclipses near the end of the Aztatlan era in the early 14th century.
In light of the fact that the petroglyphs face the rising sun I think that there is a strong probability that these petroglyphs were inspired at least in part by solar eclipses that took place over Tepic, or not far from Tepic. Tepic was within the path of totality of the July 16, 1311 total solar eclipse as may be seen in the NASA solar eclipse maps from the NASA solar eclipse atlas reproduced below -
Major eclipses of the sun preceded and followed the July 16, 1311 total solar eclipse, such as the hybrid eclipse of June 15, 1303 which would have been seen as a strong partial eclipse at Tepic. Obviously more research needs to be done but, based on the available evidence, I think my "gut feeling" that the Tepic petroglyph depicts an eclipse monster is quite valid.
This is a work in progress and I will add new material to it as it becomes available.
Here is a NASA map of the total solar eclipse and annular eclipse that occurred somewhat to the north of Tepic early in the 10th century AD. The total solar eclipse of June 18, 931, was followed by the annular eclipse of April 16, 934 less than three years later. . . Both solar eclipses would have been seen as strong partial eclipses at Tepic.
Here are some additional links -
The Spanish quoted below comes from this article - Hallan petrograbados milenarios en Nayarit
"En la mitad oriental se concentran diseños relacionados con la fertilidad-fecundidad: nubes de lluvia, caracoles seccionados y vulvas femeninas; mientras, en la sección occidental, aparecen de forma recurrente representaciones de cráneos de perfil, cuyo frente en todos los casos apunta hacia el oriente, precisamente hacia la salida del sol."
"In the eastern half are concentrated designs related to fertility-fecundity: rain clouds, sectioned snails and female vulvas (Editors's note: Are there any other kind?), while in the western section, representations of skulls in profile appear recurrently, in all cases pointing towards the east, precisely the direction of the rising sun."
It thus seems that the archaeological team believe that the fact that these petroglyphs point towards the rising sun is intentional.
* Thursday, January 24, 2013 that is. It seems that the time stamp for this blog is set to Greenwich Mean Time and thus it is claiming to have been posted on Friday, January 25, 2013.