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Tlaltecuhtli ("tlah-tek-OOT-lee") is the Mexica Earth goddess.

History

At the beginning of the fifth world, the gods Quetzalcoatl and Tezcatlipoca were creating the heavens in the form of serpents. But they found the monstrous Tlaltecuhtli destroying everything and concluded that the new world couldn't prosper with such a hideous creature, so they decided to destroy her. Tlaltecuhtli sacrificed his foot to draw the goddess out, she lost her lower jaw preventing her from going underwater. This allowed him and Quetzalcoatl to grab each of her hands and feet and tear her apart, her upper half became the sky and her lower became the earth

The other gods, angry by this treatment, had her dismembered body become features of the new world. Her skin became grasses and small flowers, her hair the trees and herbs, her eyes the springs and wells, her nose the hills and valleys, her shoulders the mountains, and her mouth the caves and rivers. But even after all this, Tlaltecuhtli remained alive and demanded human blood as repayment for her sacrifice.[1]

Storm Runner Trilogy

The Fire Keeper

It was believed that worshipers of Tlaltecuhtli have been abducting godborns and taking them to Aztlán, the homeland of the Aztecs before they journeyed to central Mexico. However, it was actually Jordan and Bird. They manipulated the god's into having Hurakan executed, then planned sacrifice at that moment to Tlaltecuhtli could rise again. But the godborns had been rescued by Zane Obispo and Ah-Puch pulled Hurakan away at the last minute.

The Shadow Crosser

When Camazotz and Ixkik' sacrifice Akan, they use the wine god's death to summon her. When the Mayan gods gather for a meeting, they are ambushed and she prepares to eat them. However, after she does, she is double crossed and taken to Venice Beach in 1987, where Jordan and Bird keep her chained in an aquarium on their yacht.

Sometime later, she is saved by Zane Obispo and escorted out of the aquarium by Brooks. She is taken to Jazz's boat and they escape. They reach shore and after regrouping with Marco and erasing Jazz's memories they return to the present where she has trouble regurgitating the gods.

They arrive at Hurakan's treehouse to find the jungle in flames and the records being destroyed. She regurgitates two of the gods as Ren Santiago comforts her. Soon Saqik'oxol leaves to fight, Ren and Brooks leave to find the gods she regurgitated, and Rosie leaves to find Ixtab. She tells Zane, Adrik, and Marco that she can heal Hondo Obispo if they heal her. They agree and give her some of their energy before she regurgitates a teenage Camazotz. She reverts to a humanoid form after that and heals Hondo before leaving.

Appearance

On the gold bracelets of her worshipers, Tlaltecuhtli was depicted as a creature with big googly eyes. Her lower jaw was missing, and it had a knife-like tongue. All over her upper body was gaping mouths filled with sharp teeth. Her clothing from the waist down was made of crossed bones and skulls.

In the series, she resembles a reptilian creature similar to Jabba the Hutt. She has yellow-green scales and yellow eyes.

However after Zane, Marco, and Adrik combine their energy to heal Hondo, she reverts back to an older human lady appearance with white-streaked dark hair that hung down her small back.

Abilities

  • Geokinesis: As the Mexica Goddess of the Earth, she has complete control and divine authority over the earth.
  • Chlorokinesis: Tlaltecuhtli can control plants, as shown when she healed Hondo.

Trivia

  • Tlaltecuhtli's name means the one who gives and devours life.[2]
  • Tlaltecuhtli is sometimes referred to as Cipactli, a legendary creature that is part crocodile, part fish, and part toad.[3] The name of Sipacna derives from Cipactli.[4]
  • A monolith of Tlaltecuhtli was discovered in 2006 at the ruins of Templo Mayor in Mexico City. The sculpture measured approximately 13.1 x 11.8 feet and weighed nearly twelve tons, making it one of the largest Aztec monoliths ever discovered.[5]
  • Some say there are actually four Mexica earth gods: Tlaltecuhtli, Coatlicue, Cihuacoatl and Tlazolteotl.
  • Her Greek/Roman counterparts are Gaea/Terra. ReadRiordan described both earth goddesses as destructive as they are creative.[6]
  • Her Egyptian counterpart is Geb.
  • Her Norse counterpart is Ymir.
  • Her Hindu counterpart is Prithvi.

References

  1. A Pocket Dictionary of Aztec and Mayan Gods and Goddesses by Clara Bezanilla
  2. The Fire Keeper, Glossary
  3. Myths and Legends: An Illustrated Guide to Their Origins and Meanings by Philip Wilkinson
  4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cipactli
  5. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tlaltecuhtli#Monolith
  6. https://www.readriordan.com/2019/08/14/aztec-influences-in-the-fire-keeper/
Storm Runner Trilogy
Books: The Storm Runner | The Fire Keeper | The Shadow Crosser
Main Characters: Zane Obispo | Brooks | Rosie | Hondo Obispo | Ren Santiago | Jordan | Bird
Secondary Characters: Mrs. Obispo | Antonia Caballero | Ixtab | Muwan | Quinn | Antonio Marcel De la Vega | Jazz | Louie | Marco | Adrik | Alana
Minor Characters: Mr. Ortiz | Pacific | Saqik'oxol | Abuelo Santiago | Clementino | Itzel | Fausto | Red Queen | Gee | Serena | Sipacna | Kip
Mayan Gods: Ah-Puch | Hurakan | K'ukumatz | Ixkik' | Bakab | Yant'o Triad | Nakon | Ixkakaw | Ixchel | Itzamna | Alom | Camazotz | Chaac | Akan
Mexica Gods: Tlaltecuhtli
Creatures: Demon Runner | Nawal | Alux | Demon | Giant | Hellhound | Mud Person | Ahuizotl
Related Content: Jennifer Cervantes | Throne of Sand Duology | Rick Riordan Presents
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