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Alternate meanings: Precious-Stone, Precious-Woman, Jade-Woman, Lady-Precious-Green, She-of-the-Jade-Skirt, Goddess-of-the-Jade-Petticoat.
[to Whom the seventeenth day of November, day 321, is dedicated]
Geography/Culture: America, North: Mexico (Mexico City 19.28n x 99.09w), Aztec.
Linguistic Note: According to the translaters of Book of the Gods and Rites and The Ancient Calendar, Duran translates chalchihuitl as 'emerald'. In fact the stone referred to is jade, symbol of water, 'that which is precious', the heart of life itself, plus cueitl, 'skirt'. Phonetic note: My first attempt to render Chalchihuitlicue in fopho was: C0LCYWTLYKUA. Subsequently I discovered and have followed the guide to Nahuatl pronunciation in Duran (BGRAC 2), for Chalchihuitlicue and all other Aztec Goddesses.
Description: Goddess of running waters, cornfields and breads; Mistress of rain; Lady of the waters; She Who has a fondness for humanity; She Who personifies youthful beauty and ardour; Bringer of abundant harvests and fertile years; She Who is the water and Whose domain is rivers and springs; Purifier of sin; She Who is invoked for the protection of chaste love, marriage and new-born children.
To Whom Sacred: prickly-pear laden with fruit (the fruit symbolizes the human heart); ahuehuete tree (because they are always to be found at the foot of a spring -- of the genus taxodium related to the redwood of California and the bald cypress of southern US); water-lily; jade; emerald; turquoise; the color blue-green (of lakes); water; whirl-pool (into which gold, precious stones and jewelry were cast as offerings to Her); whirl-pool patterns; quetzal feathers; clappers (always the sign of water deities); the colour red; the direction east; annual sacrifice of a young girl (representative of the Goddess), by decapitation, after which she was flayed and her skin was worn by an officiating priest.
Iconography: wooden statue carved in the form of a young woman, some twelve years old; native womanly garments, all red; cropped hair with tiara of red paper; necklace of golden ears of corn tied with a blue ribbon; gold earings; in Her hands She holds ears of corn imitated in feather-work and garnished with gold; Her arms are held open like a woman dancing. Or She was painted blue and yellow; wore a green stone necklace, turquoise earplugs, and a blue cap with a spray of quetzal feathers. Her skirt and shift were painted like water. She was ornamented with water-lilies and She carried clappers.
Festival: September 15, filled with rejoicing and offerings (possibly only held during a good year).
Male Associate: brother/consort, Tlaloc, Path-Under-the-Earth, (or Long-Cave). god of rain, thunder and lightning.