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List of Maya gods and supernatural beings

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List of Maya gods and supernatural beings

This is a name list of Maya gods and supernatural beings playing a role in the Classic (200-900AD) and Post-Classic Maya religion. The names are mainly taken from the Books of Chilam Balam, Lacandon ethnography, the Madrid Codex, the work of Diego de Landa, and the Popol Vuh. Depending on the source, most names are either Yucatec or K'iche'. The Classic Period names (belonging to a language related to modern Ch'ol and Ch'orti') are only rarely known with certainty.

Contents

  • Maya mythological beings 1
  • A 2
  • B 3
  • C 4
  • E 5
  • G 6
  • H 7
  • I 8
  • J 9
  • K 10
  • M 11
  • N 12
  • O 13
  • Q 14
  • S 15
  • T 16
  • V 17
  • X 18
  • Y 19
  • Z 20
  • See also 21
  • Notes 22
  • References 23

Maya mythological beings

List Source Key
*CHB*–Books of Chilam Balam; *LAC*–Lacandon ethnography; *L*–de Landa; *M*—Madrid Codex; *PV*–the Popol Vuh.
Note
The corresponding deities in the revised Schellhas-Zimmermann-Taube list of codical deities,[1] have been indicated between the square brackets.

A

Acan
A god of alcoholic beverages.
Acat
Yucatec divine patron of those making scarifications and tattoos (Cogolludo); also called Acat *CHB* and Ah Cat.[2]
Ah Muzencab
The god of bees.
Ah Peku
The god of thunder.
Ah Puch
The god of death.
Ah Tabai
The god of the hunt.
Ah Uuc Ticab
A god of the Earth.
Ahau Chamahez
A god of medicine and good health.
Ajbit
One of the thirteen creator gods who helped construct humanity from maize.
Ajtzak
One of the thirteen creator gods who helped construct humanity from maize.
Akhushtal
goddess of childbirth
Akna
Meaning "Our mother," a very general title applied, amongst others, to goddesses of fertility and childbirth.
Alom
A sky god and one of the creator deities who participated in the last two attempts at creating humanity.
Awilix
Patron of the Nija'ib' lineage of the K'iche'.

B

Bacab *L* [ god N ]
Old god of the interior of the earth and of thunder, sky-carrier, fourfold.
Bahlam
Any of a group of jaguar gods who protected people and communities.
Bitol *PV*
A sky god and one of the creator deities who participated in the last two attempts at creating humanity.
Bolon Ts'akab (Dzacab) *L* [ god K ]
Ah Bolon Dzacab 'Innumerable Generations', the Lightning god, patron of the harvest and the seeds.
Bolontiku *CHB*
A group of nine underworld gods.
Bolon Yokte'
'Nine Strides', mentioned in the Books of Chilam Balam and in Classic inscriptions; functions unknown.
Buluc Chabtan [ god F ]
The god of war, violence, and sacrifice.

C

Cabrakan
A god of mountains and earthquakes. He was a son of Vucub Caquix and Chimalmat.
Cacoch *LAC*
A creator god.
Camazotz *PV*
Bat god, tries to kill the Hero Twins. Enemy of Chaac
Can Tzicnal *L*
Bacab of the north, is assigned the color white, and the Muluc years, son of Itzamna and Ixchel.
Chaac *L*
The god of Storms and rain,enemy of Camazotz
Chaac Uayab Xoc *L*
A fish god and the patron deity of fishermen.
Chicchan
A group of four Chorti rain gods who live in lakes and make rain clouds from the water in those lakes. Each of the rain gods was associated with a cardinal direction, similar to the Bacabs. Chiccan was also the name of a day in the Tzolkin cycle of the maya calendar.
Cit-Bolon-Tum
A god of medicine and healing.
Chimalmat *PV* warrior§
A giant who, by Vucub Caquix, was the mother of Cabrakan and Zipacna.
Chin
The main god of homossexual relationships and patron of homossexual prostitutes.
Cizin
A god of death who lived in Metnal.
Colel Cab
Goddess of the Bees
Colop U Uichkin *RITUAL OF THE BACABS*
An eclipse deity.
Coyopa
The god of thunder and brother of Cakulha.
Cum Hau
A god of death and the underworld.

E

Ek Chuaj *M* (God M)
Ek Chuaj, the "black war chief" was the patron god of warriors and merchants, depicted carrying a bag over his shoulder. In art, he was a dark-skinned man with circles around his eyes, a scorpion tail and dangling lower lip.

G

GI, GII, GIII
the gods I, II, and III, that is, the three patron deities (Triad) of the Palenque kingdom: GI a sea deity with a shell ear, GII a baby lightning god (god K), and GIII the jaguar god of fire, also patron of the number Seven
Gukumatz > Q'uq'umatz *PV*
Feathered Snake god and creator. The depiction of the feathered serpent deity is present in other cultures of Mesoamerica. Gukumatz of the K'iche' Maya is closely related to the god Kukulkan of Yucatán and to Quetzalcoatl of the Aztec.

H

Hachäk'yum *LAC*
Worshipped by the Lacandon people as their patron deity.
Hobnil *L*
Bacab of the east
Hozanek *L*
Bacab of the south; the ek element in the name may refer to a star or constellation.
Hun-Batz *PV*
'One Howler Monkey', one of the two stepbrothers of the Hero Twins, one of the Howler Monkey Gods and patron of the arts.
Hun-Came *PV*
'One-Death', a lord of the underworld (Xibalba) who, along with Vucub-Came 'Seven-Death', killed Hun Hunahpu. They were defeated by the latter's sons, the Hero Twins.
Hun-Chowen *PV*
One of the two stepbrothers of the Hero Twins, one of the Howler Monkey Gods and patron of the arts.
Hun-Hunahpu *PV*
The father of the Maya Hero Twins Ixbalanque and Hun-Apu by a virgin. Beheaded in Xibalba, the underworld, by the rulers of Xibalba, Hun Came and Vucub Caquix. His sons avenged his death.
Hunab Ku
'Sole God', identical with Itzamna as the highest Yucatec god; or a more abstract upper god.
Hun-Ahpu *PV*
One of the Maya Hero Twins.
Hunahpu-Gutch *PV*
One of the thirteen creator gods who helped create humanity.
Hunahpu Utiu *PV*
One of the thirteen creator gods who helped create humanity.
Hun-Ixim
'One-Maize', a reading of the name glyph of the Classic Tonsured Maize God
Hun-nal-ye
A now obsolete reading of the name glyph of the Classic Tonsured Maize God
Huracan *PV*
'One-Leg', one of three lightning gods together called 'Heart of the Sky', and acting as world creators.

I

Itzamna
The founder of the Maya culture, he taught his people to grow maize and cacao, as well as writing, calendars, and medicine. Once mentioned as the father of the Bacabs. Connected to Kinich Ahau and Hunab Ku.
Itzananohk'u
A patron god of the Lacandon people.
Ixbalanque > Xbalanque
Ixchel *L* [goddess O]
Jaguar goddess of midwifery and medicine.
Ixmucane *PV*
One of the thirteen creator gods who helped create humanity, grandmother of the Hero Twins. See Maya religion.
Ixpiyacoc *PV*
A creator god who helped create humanity. Twelve other gods were also involved in creating humanity. See Maya religion.
Ixtab *L*
The goddess of suicide.
Ixazaluoh
The goddess of water and weaving.

J

Jacawitz *PV*
Mountain god of the K'iche'.

K

Kauil (Kawil, K'awiil)
Assumed to have been the Classic name of god K (Bolon Dzacab). Title attested for Itzamna, Uaxac Yol, and Amaite Ku; family name; probably not meaning 'food', but 'powerful'.
Kinich Ahau *L*
The solar deity.
Kinich Kakmo
A solar deity represented by a macaw, patron of Izamal (Yucatan).
Kisin(Cisin)
The most commonly depicted god of death.
Kukulkan
'Feathered Serpent', Although heavily Mexicanised, Kukulkan has his origins among the Maya of the Classic Period, when he was known as Waxaklahun Ubah Kan (/waʃaklaˈχuːn uːˈɓaχ kän/), the War Serpent, and he has been identified as the Postclassic version of the Vision Serpent of Classic Maya art.

M

Mam
A title of respect meaning "Grandfather" and applied to a number of different Maya deities including earth spirits, mountain spirits, and the four Bacabs.
Maximon
A god of travelers, merchants, medicine men/women, mischief and fertility, that was conflated with the Christian figure of Saint Simon and in modern times is part of the celebrations surrounding Holy Week.

N

Naum

The creator of human minds and thoughts.[3]

Nohochacyum
A creator-destroyer deity, the brother of the death god Kisin (or possibly another earthquake god also known as Kisin). He is the sworn enemy of the world serpent Hapikern and it is said that, in the end of days, he will destroy Hapikern by wrapping him around himself to smother him. In some versions of this story, life on earth is destroyed in the process. He is related, in some stories, to Usukan, Uyitzin, Yantho and Hapikern, all of whom wish human beings ill. Also the brother of Xamaniqinqu, the patron god of travelers and merchants.

O

Oxlahuntiku *CHB*
'Thirteen Gods', possibly sky gods, opposed to Bolontiku. Mentioned in an eschatological passage.

Q

Qaholom *PV*
One of the second set of creator gods.
Q'uq'umatz *PV*
Feathered Snake god and creator. The depiction of the feathered serpent deity is present in other cultures of Mesoamerica. Q'uq'umatz of the K'iche' Maya is closely related to the god Kukulkan of Yucatán and to Quetzalcoatl of the Aztecs.

S

Sip
a hunting god often depicted as an elderly human with deer ears and antlers.[4]

T

Tepeu *PV*
A sky god and one of the creator deities who participated in all three attempts at creating humanity.
Tohil *PV*
Tohil was a patron deity of the K'iche'. There was a great temple to him at their ancient capital of Q'umarkaj.

V

Vatanchu
"Straight God", a mountain god of the Postclassic Manche Ch'ol.[5]
Votan
legendary ancestral deity, Chiapas.
Vucub-Caquix *PV*
Bird demon, severs arm of Hero Twin, wife is Chimalmat, sons are the demonic giants Cabrakan and Zipacna.

X

Xaman Ek
the god of travelers and merchants, who gave offerings to him on the side of roads while traveling.
Xbalanque *PV* [god CH]
War Twin, one of the Hero Twins, companion to Hunahpu
Xcarruchan
A mountain god of the Postclassic Manche Ch'ol.[6]
Xmucane and Xpiayoc *PV*
A creator god couple which helped create the first humans. They are also the parents of Hun Hunahpu and Vucub Hunahpu. They were called Grandmother of Day, Grandmother of Light and Bearer twice over, begetter twice over and given the titles midwife and matchmaker.

Y

Yaluk
One of four Mopan 'Grandfathers' of the earth and chief lightning god.
Yopaat
Important rain god at Copán and Quiriguá in the southern Maya area.[7]
Yum Kaax
God of the woods, of wild nature, and of the hunt; invoked before carving out a maize field from the wilderness.

Z

Zac Cimi *L*
Bacab of the west.
Zipacna *PV*
Demonic personification of the earth crust.

See also

Notes


-- Module:Hatnote -- -- -- -- This module produces hatnote links and links to related articles. It -- -- implements the and meta-templates and includes -- -- helper functions for other Lua hatnote modules. --


local libraryUtil = require('libraryUtil') local checkType = libraryUtil.checkType local mArguments -- lazily initialise Module:Arguments local yesno -- lazily initialise Module:Yesno

local p = {}


-- Helper functions


local function getArgs(frame) -- Fetches the arguments from the parent frame. Whitespace is trimmed and -- blanks are removed. mArguments = require('Module:Arguments') return mArguments.getArgs(frame, {parentOnly = true}) end

local function removeInitialColon(s) -- Removes the initial colon from a string, if present. return s:match('^:?(.*)') end

function p.findNamespaceId(link, removeColon) -- Finds the namespace id (namespace number) of a link or a pagename. This -- function will not work if the link is enclosed in double brackets. Colons -- are trimmed from the start of the link by default. To skip colon -- trimming, set the removeColon parameter to true. checkType('findNamespaceId', 1, link, 'string') checkType('findNamespaceId', 2, removeColon, 'boolean', true) if removeColon ~= false then link = removeInitialColon(link) end local namespace = link:match('^(.-):') if namespace then local nsTable = mw.site.namespaces[namespace] if nsTable then return nsTable.id end end return 0 end

function p.formatPages(...) -- Formats a list of pages using formatLink and returns it as an array. Nil -- values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local ret = {} for i, page in ipairs(pages) do ret[i] = p._formatLink(page) end return ret end

function p.formatPageTables(...) -- Takes a list of page/display tables and returns it as a list of -- formatted links. Nil values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local links = {} for i, t in ipairs(pages) do checkType('formatPageTables', i, t, 'table') local link = t[1] local display = t[2] links[i] = p._formatLink(link, display) end return links end

function p.makeWikitextError(msg, helpLink, addTrackingCategory) -- Formats an error message to be returned to wikitext. If -- addTrackingCategory is not false after being returned from -- Module:Yesno, and if we are not on a talk page, a tracking category -- is added. checkType('makeWikitextError', 1, msg, 'string') checkType('makeWikitextError', 2, helpLink, 'string', true) yesno = require('Module:Yesno') local title = mw.title.getCurrentTitle() -- Make the help link text. local helpText if helpLink then helpText = ' (help)' else helpText = end -- Make the category text. local category if not title.isTalkPage and yesno(addTrackingCategory) ~= false then category = 'Hatnote templates with errors' category = string.format( '%s:%s', mw.site.namespaces[14].name, category ) else category = end return string.format( '%s', msg, helpText, category ) end


-- Format link -- -- Makes a wikilink from the given link and display values. Links are escaped -- with colons if necessary, and links to sections are detected and displayed -- with " § " as a separator rather than the standard MediaWiki "#". Used in -- the template.


function p.formatLink(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local link = args[1] local display = args[2] if not link then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no link specified', 'Template:Format hatnote link#Errors', args.category ) end return p._formatLink(link, display) end

function p._formatLink(link, display) -- Find whether we need to use the colon trick or not. We need to use the -- colon trick for categories and files, as otherwise category links -- categorise the page and file links display the file. checkType('_formatLink', 1, link, 'string') checkType('_formatLink', 2, display, 'string', true) link = removeInitialColon(link) local namespace = p.findNamespaceId(link, false) local colon if namespace == 6 or namespace == 14 then colon = ':' else colon = end -- Find whether a faux display value has been added with the | magic -- word. if not display then local prePipe, postPipe = link:match('^(.-)|(.*)$') link = prePipe or link display = postPipe end -- Find the display value. if not display then local page, section = link:match('^(.-)#(.*)$') if page then display = page .. ' § ' .. section end end -- Assemble the link. if display then return string.format('%s', colon, link, display) else return string.format('%s%s', colon, link) end end


-- Hatnote -- -- Produces standard hatnote text. Implements the template.


function p.hatnote(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local s = args[1] local options = {} if not s then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no text specified', 'Template:Hatnote#Errors', args.category ) end options.extraclasses = args.extraclasses options.selfref = args.selfref return p._hatnote(s, options) end

function p._hatnote(s, options) checkType('_hatnote', 1, s, 'string') checkType('_hatnote', 2, options, 'table', true) local classes = {'hatnote'} local extraclasses = options.extraclasses local selfref = options.selfref if type(extraclasses) == 'string' then classes[#classes + 1] = extraclasses end if selfref then classes[#classes + 1] = 'selfref' end return string.format( '
%s
', table.concat(classes, ' '), s )

end

return p-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- -- Module:Hatnote -- -- -- -- This module produces hatnote links and links to related articles. It -- -- implements the and meta-templates and includes -- -- helper functions for other Lua hatnote modules. --


local libraryUtil = require('libraryUtil') local checkType = libraryUtil.checkType local mArguments -- lazily initialise Module:Arguments local yesno -- lazily initialise Module:Yesno

local p = {}


-- Helper functions


local function getArgs(frame) -- Fetches the arguments from the parent frame. Whitespace is trimmed and -- blanks are removed. mArguments = require('Module:Arguments') return mArguments.getArgs(frame, {parentOnly = true}) end

local function removeInitialColon(s) -- Removes the initial colon from a string, if present. return s:match('^:?(.*)') end

function p.findNamespaceId(link, removeColon) -- Finds the namespace id (namespace number) of a link or a pagename. This -- function will not work if the link is enclosed in double brackets. Colons -- are trimmed from the start of the link by default. To skip colon -- trimming, set the removeColon parameter to true. checkType('findNamespaceId', 1, link, 'string') checkType('findNamespaceId', 2, removeColon, 'boolean', true) if removeColon ~= false then link = removeInitialColon(link) end local namespace = link:match('^(.-):') if namespace then local nsTable = mw.site.namespaces[namespace] if nsTable then return nsTable.id end end return 0 end

function p.formatPages(...) -- Formats a list of pages using formatLink and returns it as an array. Nil -- values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local ret = {} for i, page in ipairs(pages) do ret[i] = p._formatLink(page) end return ret end

function p.formatPageTables(...) -- Takes a list of page/display tables and returns it as a list of -- formatted links. Nil values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local links = {} for i, t in ipairs(pages) do checkType('formatPageTables', i, t, 'table') local link = t[1] local display = t[2] links[i] = p._formatLink(link, display) end return links end

function p.makeWikitextError(msg, helpLink, addTrackingCategory) -- Formats an error message to be returned to wikitext. If -- addTrackingCategory is not false after being returned from -- Module:Yesno, and if we are not on a talk page, a tracking category -- is added. checkType('makeWikitextError', 1, msg, 'string') checkType('makeWikitextError', 2, helpLink, 'string', true) yesno = require('Module:Yesno') local title = mw.title.getCurrentTitle() -- Make the help link text. local helpText if helpLink then helpText = ' (help)' else helpText = end -- Make the category text. local category if not title.isTalkPage and yesno(addTrackingCategory) ~= false then category = 'Hatnote templates with errors' category = string.format( '%s:%s', mw.site.namespaces[14].name, category ) else category = end return string.format( '%s', msg, helpText, category ) end


-- Format link -- -- Makes a wikilink from the given link and display values. Links are escaped -- with colons if necessary, and links to sections are detected and displayed -- with " § " as a separator rather than the standard MediaWiki "#". Used in -- the template.


function p.formatLink(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local link = args[1] local display = args[2] if not link then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no link specified', 'Template:Format hatnote link#Errors', args.category ) end return p._formatLink(link, display) end

function p._formatLink(link, display) -- Find whether we need to use the colon trick or not. We need to use the -- colon trick for categories and files, as otherwise category links -- categorise the page and file links display the file. checkType('_formatLink', 1, link, 'string') checkType('_formatLink', 2, display, 'string', true) link = removeInitialColon(link) local namespace = p.findNamespaceId(link, false) local colon if namespace == 6 or namespace == 14 then colon = ':' else colon = end -- Find whether a faux display value has been added with the | magic -- word. if not display then local prePipe, postPipe = link:match('^(.-)|(.*)$') link = prePipe or link display = postPipe end -- Find the display value. if not display then local page, section = link:match('^(.-)#(.*)$') if page then display = page .. ' § ' .. section end end -- Assemble the link. if display then return string.format('%s', colon, link, display) else return string.format('%s%s', colon, link) end end


-- Hatnote -- -- Produces standard hatnote text. Implements the template.


function p.hatnote(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local s = args[1] local options = {} if not s then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no text specified', 'Template:Hatnote#Errors', args.category ) end options.extraclasses = args.extraclasses options.selfref = args.selfref return p._hatnote(s, options) end

function p._hatnote(s, options) checkType('_hatnote', 1, s, 'string') checkType('_hatnote', 2, options, 'table', true) local classes = {'hatnote'} local extraclasses = options.extraclasses local selfref = options.selfref if type(extraclasses) == 'string' then classes[#classes + 1] = extraclasses end if selfref then classes[#classes + 1] = 'selfref' end return string.format( '
%s
', table.concat(classes, ' '), s )

end

return p
  1. ^ Taube 1992
  2. ^ Knowlton 2010: 76-77
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ Thompson 1938, p. 594.
  6. ^ Wanyerka August 2009, p. 182.
  7. ^ Gutiérrez González 2012, p. 1061.

References

  • Knowlton, Timothy W., Maya Creation Myths: Words and Worlds of the Chilam Balam. University Press of Colorado, Boulder 2010.
  • Taube, Karl, The Major Gods of Ancient Yucatán. Dumbarton Oaks, Washington 1992.
  • Mark, Joshua, The Mayan Pantheon: The many gods of the Maya . 2012
  • (subscription required)
  • Thompson, J. Eric S. Maya History and Religion. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman 1970.
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