Aztec Icon #12 – OMETEOTL, Deity of Two

Well, in a mere three months I’ve managed to finish Icon #12, OMETEOTL for the coloring book YE GODS!  Actually it took only about six weeks because I spent the other six weeks trying to work out a computer system upgrade.  I’ve been using the freeware GIMP (Gnu Image Manipulation Program), but a fantastic artist-friend convinced me to buy an iMac and look into another program for drawing.

After some weeks taking a community college course in Adobe Photoshop, I took a preliminary look at Adobe Illustrator—without being particularly impressed. I still have to take tutorials in Illustrator, particularly about drawing in vectors, but in the meantime I’m continuing my artwork on GIMP (on my PC) and relying on my graphic magician to turn stuff into vectors for me.

So herewith I’m posting the standard .pdf of this icon, and when my wizard has done his trick, I’ll provide the vector drawing in the various sizes. (Again, if you want his contact for similar vectorizing work, contact me at “rbalthazar” @ msn.com.)  You can also view and download the previous 11 icons from the coloring book page.

To download this one as a pdf file with a page of caption and model images from the Aztec Codices, just right-click here and select “Save as.”  You can also download it in freely sizable vector drawings from the coloring book page.

 

Ometeotl, Deity of Two

Ometeotl, Deity of Two

OMETEOTL

Deity of Two

 OMETEOTL {o-me-te-otł} is the creative pair of Omecihuatl (Lady of Two) and Ometecuhtli (Lord of Two), conjoined as the supreme creator and parent(s) of the primary Aztec gods.  This deity of duality is transcendental, without cult, rites, or temples and exists somewhere beyond the stars.  Also known as Tonacacihuatl and Tonacatecuhtli (Lady/Lord of Sustenance), as Ilamacihuatl and Ilamatecuhtli (Lady/Lord of Creation), and as Citlalicue and Citlalatonac (deities of the stars), OMETEOTL represents unity through sexual dualism. The pair rules the highest (13th) heaven of Omeyocan where unborn souls reside. Omecihuatl chooses the days for their birth and consequently their fates.

***

I should probably explain a few things about this icon. First off, the 20 symbols arrayed around the periphery are the day-names of the month.  The Aztecs named the days of their month and counted the days of their week (13).

The sequence starts with the second up from the bottom on the right side and proceeds counter-clockwise to end in the lower right corner: Cipactli (Crocodile), Ehecatl (Wind), Calli (House), Cuetzpallin (Lizard), Coatl (Snake), Miquitzli (Death), Mazatl (Deer), Tochtli (Rabbit), Atl (Water), Itzcuintli (Dog), Ozomatli (Monkey), Malinalli (Grass), Acatl (Reed), Ocelotl (Jaguar), Cuauhtli (Eagle), Cozcacuauhtli (Vulture), Ollin (Earthquake), Tecpatl (Flint), Quiahuitl (Rain), and Xochitl (Flower).

The days in the middle of each side are also the year-bearers for the 52-year count, starting at the top and again going counter-clockwise: Rabbit, Reed, Flint, and House.

Meanwhile, the little creatures being “spit out” by the odd serpents all wear the traditional mask of Ehecatl, God of the Wind, (See Icon #5), who is the life spirit. So these “breezes” represent the new (or recycled?) souls being born.  They have claws, I assume, because most supernatural beings seem to have them.  They are based on images from Codex Borgia.

The four smaller gods represent the primary god-descendants of Ometeotl. Again counter-clockwise from lower right:  Tlaloc (based on Codex Borgia), Quetzalcoatl (based on Codex Borbonicus), and Tlahuizcalpantecuhtli (based on Codex Borbonicus).  I had intended the last to be Xiuhtecuhtli, but I made a mistake in identification.

The medallion at top center is based on an enigmatic design from Codex Borgia which I take to represent the concept of duality. The dual image of Ometeotl is drawn from Codex Fejervary-Mayer, the only image I’ve ever been able to find of that transcendent deity.  Otherwise, I haven’t a clue about the horn-like thing that Omecihuatl holds or what it may signify.

 

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