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Ehecatl

Ehecatl: The Aztec Wind God was Hard to Pin Down

Ehecatl was the wind god of the Aztec pantheon. As a weather deity, he was also indirectly connected to agriculture and the fertility of the land. Additionally, Ehecatl is commonly regarded to be an...
A Huastec Tlazolteotl statue, the British Museum. (The Trustees of the British Museum/CC BY NC SA 4.0) Background: Aztec iconography. (CC0)

Tlazolteotl: An Ancient Patroness and Purifier for all things Filthy

Tlazolteotl was an earth goddess in the pantheon of the Aztecs, although her area of influence is a little wider and more unusual than some goddesses of the earth and fertility. Filth was her domain...
Kukulkan as a snake deity at the base of the west face of the northern stairway of El Castillo, Chichen Itza

Kukulcan, the Snake God of the Maya, Remains as a Legacy of the Once-Powerful Civilization

Kukulcan was the all-powerful snake god worshipped by the Maya. While little information remains about the legends and mythology of Kukulcan – due to the tragic destruction of the Maya codices by the...
Chalchiuhtlicue final model.

Navigating the Realm of an Aztec Water Goddess and One of the Five Suns

The Aztecs placed an array of important life elements in the hands of Chalchiuhtlicue. She was primarily a goddess of freshwater, thus her domain included lakes, rivers, and streams. But she also...
Detail of ‘Xipe Totec.’ (Michael Jaecks/Deviant Art) Background: Aztec calendar

Xipe Totec: This Gory God Shows the Unique Way Aztecs Viewed Fertility and Renewal

‘Our Lord the Flayed One’ – following this god’s choice of attire, human skin - Xipe Totec would have been a terrifying sight. But this was an extremely important deity in the Mesoamerican pantheon,...
The solar gods of the indigenous cultures of the Americas have many names but share one radiant face.

American Gods: Rituals & Sacrifices to the All-Powerful Solar Gods

The ancients knew him well. He was as powerful as a god, as dangerous as a demon. He generously gave life – and he ruthlessly took it away. He appeared to all, from the darkest and most bone-chilling...
An early morning view of the Mound City Group. (NPS Photo / Tom Engberg) Hopewell copper antler headdress on a mannequin. (University of Nebraska Lincoln/CC BY NC 4.0)

The Liverpool Mounds in Illinois: Part 2 - Rediscovering Hopewell Ritual and Meaning

In part 1 of this article, the features of the Liverpool Mound group in Fulton County Illinois were described. This second half focuses on the possible meanings of the mounds and their contents and...
Genealogy of the Incas by Cuzco School. 18th or early 19th century.

Creation Myths Hold Hard Facts About Our Ancient Origins

The largest pre-Hispanic civilization in the Americas was the Inca Empire and from their capital city of Cusco, rulers known as Sapa Inka (Quechua for "the only Inca”) controlled a vast territory...
Aztec sculpture representing the head of the aztec god Xolotl, exhibited in the Mexico room of the Museo Nacional de Antropología de México.

Xolotl – The Underworld Dog God of the Aztecs

According to Aztec mythology, Xolotl was a deity normally associated with Quetzalcoatl, one of the most important gods in the Aztec pantheon. As a matter of fact, Xolotl was regarded to be the twin...
Shields bearing image of Ahuizotl, Museum of Ethnology, Vienna.

Was the Ahuizotl an Aztec Mythical Creature or a Real Fisherman’s Foe?

The Ahuizotl (which may be translated from Nahuatl to mean ‘Thorny One of the Water’) is a creature found in the mythology of the Aztecs. This legendary creature is believed to inhabit the lakes and...
Sacred Inca citadel, Machu Picchu, Peru, on the boarder of the Andes and the Amazon.

Matching Myth and Genetics: Revealing the Origins of the Inca Through Modern DNA

The Inca people arrived at Cusco valley and in a few centuries built the Tawantinsuyu, the largest empire in the Americas. The Tawantinsuyu was the cultural climax of 6,000 years of Central Andes...
'Patasola.’

Patasola: The Destructive Femme Fatale of the South American Jungle

Ancient civilizations who navigated the unforgiving coastlines of the North Atlantic, like the Vikings, feared, worshiped, and mythologized a pantheon of unforgiving sea creatures with origins half...
Aerial view of Nahualac lake when dry. Image: Arturo Cruz, Terrasat Cartografía.

Has a Millennium Old ‘Floating’ Replica of the Aztec Cosmos Been Found In Mexico?

Mexican archaeologists claim to have unearthed a stone sanctuary in a small lake on the side of a volcano east of Mexico City that may have been created as a miniature model of the universe. Stone "...
Deriv; A drowned land of Kasskara - Hopi.

Kásskara: Sunken Land of the Hopi Ancestors

There used to be a fable, commonly imposed as fact on schoolchildren in the United States, that in Columbus' time nearly everyone believed the Earth was flat. Fortunately, this untruth has been...
Depiction of the hanging of Elizabeth Wilson, with William Wilson coming with the pardon (from a later edition of The Pennsylvania Hermit).

The Pennsylvania Hermit: The Woeful Tale of a Grieving Brother’s Broken-hearted Hermitage

William “Amos” Wilson, who is known also as the Pennsylvania Hermit, is a figure in the folklore of Pennsylvania, more specifically of its south-eastern and south-central regions. William lived...

A Hopi Hero’s Journey: How the Snake Clan Came to Arizona

Joseph Campbell, in his classic book The Hero With A Thousand Faces explores in depth the universal mythic narrative of the culture-hero (traditionally male) who goes forth not to conquer but...

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