Most are made of volcanic stone with some made of marble and granite.
They are usually rectangular or circular with grooves on one or both sides to macerate the fibers.
Foreign academics began studying this ritual use of amate in the mid-20th century, and the Otomi people of the area began producing the paper commercially.
Otomi craftspeople began selling it in cities such as Mexico City, where the paper was revived by Nahua painters in Guerrero to create "new" indigenous craft, which was then promoted by the Mexican government.
This history can be roughly divided into three periods: the pre-Hispanic period, the Spanish colonial period to the 20th century, and from the latter 20th century to the present, marked by the paper's use as a commodity. It was discovered at the site of Huitzilapa, Jalisco.
Huitzilapa is a shaft tomb culture site located northwest of Tequila Volcano near the town of Magdalena.
) is a type of bark paper that has been manufactured in Mexico since the precontact times. Amate paper was extensively produced and used for both communication, records, and ritual during the Triple Alliance; however, after the Spanish conquest, its production was mostly banned and replaced by European paper.
Amate paper production never completely died, nor did the rituals associated with it.
This paper was related to power and religion, the way through which the Aztecs imposed and justified their dominance in Mesoamerica.
As tribute, it represented a transaction between the dominant groups and the dominated villages.
It could be bent, shirred, glued and melded for specific finishing touches and for decoration.