Tlaltecuhtli Cult in ancient Mexico was exclusively for priesthood

Washington, USA - A new research points out that the Tlaltecuhtli Cult in ancient Mexico was meant exclusively for priesthood.

According to a report in Art Daily, archaeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma said that cult to dual deity Tlaltecuhtli (lord/lady) among Mexica people was restricted to priesthood, as there is no temple known to present devoted exclusively to Tlaltecuhtli.

Moctezuma remarked that according to sources, there is no register of Tlaltecuhtli festivities in Aztec calendar, although it is considered one of the most important deities of Mexica pantheon.

For what is known through codices, the cult to this deity was reserved to priests who were in charge of presenting the offerings.

Moctezuma, who’s a professor at the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), commented that at present, there are more than 40 Tlaltecuhtli representations, outstanding the zoomorphic, feminine one, with her mouth open, showing her fangs; the joints present a skull mask, she has claws, and her legs are open.

Her main function was to devour corpses.

“Tlaltecuhtli devoured and then gave birth to them through her womb, wherever their destiny pointed out. The deity had the dual function of consuming and giving birth to earthly beings. She had a great impact in Mexica society, awakening fear and respect as Kali in India,” said Moctezuma.

“Tlaltecuhtli is also represented as part of other Aztec deities; for instance, she appears on the inferior side of Coatlicue monumental sculpture exhibited at the National Museum of Anthropology, as well as on the bottom of the Chac Mool found in 1947 in Guatemala Street, Mexico City,” he pointed out.

In other feminine representation, the most abundant, the dual deity shows her back, because she is essentially with her chest on the ground.

In the masculine representations, the same iconographic elements appear but showing the front, mentioned the archaeologist.