The tradition of creating masks in Mexico dates to the Aztec Empire. Masks of jade and other stones were thought to be offerings to the gods, but also used in a wide range of dances. The mask disguises the human face in order for the wearer to impersonate the character of the masks. Masks are most often human, demonic, animalistic, religious or just fantastical. Ceremonial and folk dances are common throughout Mexico. In these dances, a wide variety of masks are used to tell a story.
With the conquering of Mexico by Spain, the missionaries brought traditional dances to this world as well. Moros and Christianos is an early dance introduced by Catholic priests which celebrates the exile of the Moors from Spain by the Christians. This dance is a lesson in the righteousness of Christianity and is a traditional dance which continues today. Other dances using masks celebrate the harvest, religious holidays and other cultural celebrations.