Introduction to the Aztecs (Mexica)
What’s in a name?
Where did the Mexica come from?
Forging an empire
Sustaining an empire
A complex pantheon of deities
- Tezcatlipoca (“Smoking Mirror”), patron of rulers. He is also associated with sorcery, symbolized by the obsidian mirror that he wears
- Quetzalcoatl (“Feathered Serpent”), a god with a long history in Mesoamerica. He was associated with the planet Venus, with wind, and also with fertility
- Chalchiuhtlicue (“She of the Jade Skirt”) a goddess of water fertility, and associated with Tlaloc. While Tlaloc presided over rain, she was associated with bodies of water like lakes and rivers Chicomecoatl (“Seven Serpent”) and Cinteotl (“Maize God”), both associated with maize and sustenance
- Mictlancihuatl (“Lady of Mictlan”) and Mictlantecuhtli (“Lord of Mictlan”), deities of death and who presided over Mictlan, the underworld