Aztec god of death and king of Mictlan, the lowest level of the Aztec Underworld. He appears as either a skeleton with blood splattered all over him, or a man with skull head, but he did have eyeballs. His headdress contained owl feathers, his earspools were made of human bones, and in some artwork he shown wearing a necklace of human eyeballs, as well as his hair contained eyeballs.
Side note: if you ever do see Aztec artwork, don’t assume the skeleton one is him, many gods/goddesses were potrayed that way as it was viewed as a sign of fertility. He wore sandals, a sign of nobility and would be shown with his mouth open, ready to devour the stars for the daytime.
What’s so weird about him? Why do you like him?
Well first off in majority of artwork found of him, he always looks like he has this big toothy grin. He’s such a happy ruler of the underworld, while majority are portrayed as bitter hardened deities. The Aztecs adored him and his wife Mictecacihuatl, the patron goddess of Day of the Dead. When sacrificing time came around, people were always honored to be sacrificed to him. Not to mention the fun pastime of cannibalism is linked to him. Quick trivia: the candy skulls used today were originally acts of cannibalism mixed with some sweets. Yummy.
The one thing I always remember about him is the creation of humans myth. When Quetzalcoatl, Aztec culture hero and god, wanted to create humans he was told he would need bones from the previous world. The previous world was the 4th that Mictlantecuhtli ruled over, and as humans we currently live in the 5th world. Well Quetzalcoatl went down to meet him, at first he agreed and allowed Quetzalcoatl to take some bones, but changed his mind and tried to prevent him from leaving.
In this process, the bones fell and broke off into many different sizes, Quetzalcoatl managed to escape with all the bones and this is why humans have different sized bones. So thank the lord of death for not having your feet the same size as your arms and legs.
(Art by rafaelgonzalez)