Tzitzimitl (plural tzitzimime, Nahuatl: elderly grandmother ) was called in Aztec mythology, a female deity who is then assigned the stars. Tzitzimime were considered from above descends monster.


Tzitzimime were usually portrayed as a female skeletons, dressed in skirts, skulls and bones. Although they were clearly female, show some pictures it with a phallus in the form of a snake. Sometimes they wear a necklace of human hearts or earrings in the shape of a human hand. Elsewhere, they are represented as spiders.

Mythological meanings

In Aztec mythology, the role of Tzitzimime was contradictory. Because of the hostile aspects that were associated with them, they were often referred to in Christian influenced by descriptions of the conquest as demons or even the devil. However, this reduces the importance they had in the Aztec pantheon. In fact, the Tzitzimime goddesses that had to do with reproduction and fertility and were consequently called mainly by midwives and birthing women. Thematically they were therefore associated with other female deities, for example with Cihuateteo, Coatlicue and Citlalicue, but also with Itzpapalotl, a powerful warrior who was sometimes regarded as the leader of the Tzitzimime. Aside from her duties in the context of reproduction, the Tzitzimime were considered dangerous. For solar eclipses were believed in the stars that you saw then surround the darkened sun to see Tzitzimime who attacked the sun to prevent that she could shine again. It is also believed that the Tzitzimime eclipses used to go down to the earth and devour people. Also during the nemontemi, a five-day period in the Aztec calendar, which was viewed as a phase of the accident, it was feared the Tzitzimime. In general, it was assumed that they wanted to destroy the Earth and therefore fought the sun at every sunrise and every sunset.

Tzitzimitl and pulque

The Histoyre you Mechique contains a mythical interpretation of the origin of pulque: After the creation of mankind, namely, the gods decided to give the people something they want to dance. These aroused the lovely goddess Mayahuel and Quetzalcoatl persuaded her to come with him to the earth. There are both united in a forked tree. The wicked grandmother Mayahuels but a Tzitzimitl, mobilized the remaining Tzitzimime to find the renegade Mayahuel. This threw themselves down on the tree that fell apart under their onslaught. The grandmother Mayahuels she discovered it in one of the branches, tore it into a thousand pieces and they for fodder to the other Tzitzimime. After the dark star goddesses were in heaven again, Quetzalcoatl Mayahuels burying bones in the earth. Wherever he buried a piece that later grew an agave, the raw material from which pulque ( Nahuatl: ixtac octli ) is obtained.