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Aztec Mythic Volcanoes Iztaccihuatl & Popocatepetl - Jimmy

Aztec Mythic Volcanoes Iztaccihuatl & Popocatepetl - Jimmy

14" x 18" x 1"



In one version of a myth about the birth of the volcanoes, an Aztec Emperor declares that his daughter, Princess Iztaccihuatl (Izta), and Prince Popocatepetl (Popoca) are to be married if Popoca during a battle kills and brings back the head of an enemy of the Emperor. Popoca succeeds, but before he returns jealous warriors tell the Emperor that Popoca was killed during the battle. On hearing this, Izta dies of grief. Popoca, saddened by her death, leaves town taking her body with him. In a mountainous area he puts her body on a funeral table, sits down, and dies of sadness. Touched by Popoca’s sacrifice, the gods raised the bodies up as the two volcanoes.


Popocatepetl was sacred to Tlaloc, the Aztec god of rain, lightning, storms, and other atmospheric phenomena. Shrines to him are found on Popocatepetl, and a figure of him was found in a cavern on Iztaccihuatl. Smoke from Popocatepetl was probably seen as a cloud formation. He first appears as early as 800 BCE as one of the principal gods in Pre-Columbian-American religions. The Aztecs ruled much of Central and part of Southern Mexico from 1300 to the Spanish conquest in 1521.

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