Mictlantecuhtli Picture

This small piece (5.5''x9'') was commissioned as a tattoo- the design should be on the client's leg soon!

It illustrates one of the Aztec Empire's most fearsome deities- Mictlantecuhtli, god of the underworld. His appearance here is very closely modeled on period (that is, Pre-Columbian) Aztec codices, primarily the Codex Borgia. The goal was to make my version near-indistinguishable from the ancient ones.

Mictlantecuhtli (whose name I've gotten very good at pronouncing, by the way) is a truly fascinating figure. He is usually depicted as a bleached, blood-splattered corpse or skeleton, wearing a headdress decorated with human bones and eyeballs. His mouth is usually painted open, symbolically ready to devour stars (which, in Aztec mythology, he consumes each morning). He rules the underworld (called Mictlan) with his wife Mictecacihuatl.

Oh, and that's a heart on the dagger he's holding. Mictlantecuhtli's sacrificial ceremonies were particularly sinister.
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