The operative and controlling mechanisms of steady-state creep in hot-pressed AlN have been determined both from kinetic data within the temperature and constant compressive stress ranges of 1470 to 1670 K and 100 to 370 MPa, respectively, and from the microstructural results of TEM. No secondary phases were detected in the bulk or at the grain boundaries using Raman spectroscopy and HREM. The stress exponent was ≍1.0 at all temperatures. The activation energies ranged between 558 and 611 kJ/mol. The most prominent microstructural features of the crept samples were elongated grains, strain whorls, and triple-point folds. Dislocations were generated only at the strain whorls in order to relieve the localized stress caused by intraboundary mechanical interaction among the grains. They contributed little to the observed deformation. The controlling mechanism for creep was diffusion-accommodated grain-boundary sliding. This mechanism was accompanied in parallel by relatively small amounts of unaccommodated grain-boundary sliding. Cavitation was not observed.