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Native Languages of the Americas:
Aztec Legends, Myths, and Stories

This is our index of Aztec folktales and traditional stories that can be read online. We have organized our Native American mythology section by tribe to make them easier to locate; however, variants on the same legend are often told by American Indians from different tribes, especially if those tribes are kinfolk or neighbors to each other. In particular, though these legends come from the Aztecs, the traditional stories of related tribes like the Toltec are very similar.

Enjoy the stories! If you would like to recommend an Aztec legend for this page, please let us know.

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Aztec Gods and Goddesses

Click on each god's name for more detailed information about his or her role in Aztec mythology.

Quetzalcoatl (also spelled Quetzalcohuatl): The feathered serpent, god of the wind and civilization. Quetzalcoatl was the special benefactor of humans, bringing them corn and teaching them how to live. Pronounced ket-sall-ko-ah-tl.

Huitzilopochti: God of the sun and of war, considered the spiritual leader and patron god of the Aztecs. Pronounced wee-tsee-loh-poach-tlee.

Tlaloc: The god of rain and of agriculture. Pronounced tlah-loke.

Chalchiuhtlicue (also known as Jade Skirt): The goddess of water, wife of Tlaloc. Pronounced chawl-chee-oo-tlee-koo-eh.

Coatlicue: Goddess of the earth, associated with serpents. She is the mother of Huitzilopochti, the moon, and all the stars. Pronounced koh-ah-tlee-koo-eh.

Tezcatlipoca (also known as Smoking Mirror): This complex god has played different roles in different times and places in the Aztec world. He is associated with both light and darkness, and with both destruction and creative energy. He is often portrayed as an antagonist to Quetzalcoatl.

Other Mythological Figures in Aztec/Nahuatl Legends

Ahuizotl (also spelled Ahuitzotl, Auitzotl and other ways): This is a dangerous water monster of Aztec mythology. Its name means "water opossum." It looks somewhat like a large stylized opossum only with a hand at the end of its tail, which it uses to drag people underwater, kill them and eat their eyes. Pronounced ah-weet-soh-tl.

Aztec Indian Folklore

*Aztec Hymns:
    Collection of sacred Aztec songs.
*Mexican Mythology: Nahua Religion:
    Online book of Toltec and Aztec myths.
*Aztec Creation Story:
    Aztec myth about the creation of the world.
*The Five Suns:
    Mythological eras of the Aztecs.
*The Death of Quetzalcoatl:
    Nahuatl myths about the life and death of the god Quetzalcoatl, with English translations and commentary.
*The Birth of Huitzilopochtli:
    Aztec myth about the magical origin of the god Huitzilopochtli.
*Earth Goddess:
    Aztec Indian myth about the goddess Tlalteuctli.
*Aztec Flood Myth:
    Aztec stories about the flooding of the earth.
*The Rag-Picker and the Priest:
    Aztec legend about a rag-picker trying to steal dangeous magical items.

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Recommended Books on Aztec Mythology
Our organization earns a commission from any book bought through these links

An Illustrated Dictionary of the Gods and Symbols of Ancient Mexico:
    Excellent introduction to the mythology and religious art of the Aztecs and other Mexican tribes.
The Codex Borgia:
    Reproduction of one of the most complete and important pre-Columbian Aztec religious manuscripts.
The Eagle and the Rainbow: Timeless Tales from Mexico:
    Children's book illustrating several Aztec and other Mexican Indian folktales.
The Deetkatoo:
    Great collection of traditional tales about little people from the Nahua and other tribes.

Additional Resources

 Aztec (Mexica) mythology
 Aztec mythology
 Books of American Indian mythology
 American Indian religion
 Aztec words
 Native Mexicans
 Mesoamerican cultural area
 Uto-Aztecan tribes
 Aztec Indians
 Native American websites for kids

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