THE LEGEND OF POPOCATEPETL IZTACCIHUATL

The legend of Popocatepetl Iztaccihuatl says that one day, the warriors from the Aztec empire came back from war.

Popocatepetl Iztaccihuatl

But neither the Teponaxtles (drums), nor the caracolas (wind instrument) made any sound, the Huehuetel's (large drum) percussion couldn't be heard on the streets or temples. The chirimias (flute) didn't spread their melodies through he Anahuac valley, and the 5 lakes (Chalco, Ecatepec, Texcoco, Tzowpanco and Xochimilco), reflected the image of a defeated army. The Eagle Knight, the Tiger Knight and the Capitan Coyote, brought their shields broken, their plume crests destroyed and their clothing waving in the wind in bloody shreds.

On the towers and houses, the braceros were off, the Tlecaxitl (ceremonial incense) was gone from the big burners located at the feet of the horrible figure of Texcatlipoca (The one-legged God). The flags folded and the council of the Yopica (old and wise masters of the arts and war strategies) anxiously awaited the entrance of the warriors to listen from their own lips an explanation of their embarrassing defeat.

Had been a long time since an army so well armed and big of Aztec warriors went on to conquer the lands in the South, in which the Olmecas, the Vixtotis, the Xicalanca and Zapotecas lived, and was necessary to unite the already huge lordship of Anahuac. Two lunar cycles had pass and everyone thought that the conquest was done, but now the warriors came back sad and ashamed.

During 2 moons they fought, without giving or asking for any truce, but even with all of the war knowledge learned in the Calmecac (War academy), they came back with their broken weapons and their shields bent, soaked in the enemy's blood.

At the very front of the army, an Aztec warrior was walking, and even with his shredded clothing and his broken multicolor feathers, his pride was intact, and still kept his love for his people.

All the men covered their tears with their hands, women hid their children so they couldn't see their shameful return. Only one woman did not cry, she was stunned and amazed watching at the warrior, he had calm in his eyes, but still the fire of war could still be seen.

The woman's face turned as white as the flowers in the lake, when the warrior's eyes found her own. Xochiquetzal, the woman, felt dying a little inside, because she swore eternal love to the warrior.


Then Xochiquetzal turned around with anger to see the Tlaxcalteca who made her his wife weeks before. He lied to her, saying the Azteca warrior, her sweet love, had died in the war against the Zapotecas.

Xochiquetzal stare with rage at the Tlaxcalteca, then started to run through the valley, moaning her intense misadventure.

Her beautiful figure could be seen on the reflection of the waters of the Texcoco lake, when the Aztec warrior turned around to look for Xochiquetzal, and saw her running, followed by her husband, he could see her agony. Clenched his fits and went running after her as well.

A few steps were between the beautiful Xochiquetzal and the awful husband, when the Aztec warrior reach them. There was no exchange of words. The Tlaxcalteca put out a knife from under his clothes, while the Aztec brandished his jaguar teeth incrusted club. Love and lies crashed in that moment.


The knife was looking for the Azteca's chest, while the warrior threw furious swings against the Tlaxcalteca's skull. They fought, leaving the valley, crossing it in the most bloody fight, they kept fighting between the lakes, in which the salamanders jumped. The fight lasted an eternity it seemed.



The Tlaxcalteca defending his wife and his lies. The Azteca the love of the woman for whom he went through pain and battles to make it alive back to the Anahuac.


Finally under the last ray of light from the Sun, the Azteca made a deadly wound to the Tlaxcalteca, who fled to his homeland, maybe trying to ask for help and kill the Azteca.

The fighter of love and truth went in search of his love, Xochiquetzal. He found her, laying dead in the middle of the valley, because a woman like her couldn't live with the shame of being with another man, when in fact, she loved the owner of her dreams and soul, whom she swore eternal fidelity.

The Azteca warrior knelt next to her, crying. He picked the most beautiful flowers and with them he covered her body. He also made a crown with the fragrant flower Yoloxochitl, and he brought an incense. The Zenzontletoe, a bird that imitates the voices of 400 birds, flew next to the woman and sang 400 songs.

Through the cloudy sky, the Tlahuelpoch flew by, who was the messenger of death. The legend says that suddenly the land tumble and the thunder sounded, and there was commotion like never was before, balls of fire felt on the 5 lakes, the sky went dark and the people in Anahuac was full of panic.


When the Sun came up, where the valley was, there were 2 mountains covered in snow, one of them had the shape of a woman laying on a bed of white flowers. The other one of a warrior on his knee, next to the feet of the other mountain.


The flowers that grew on top of the mountains were named Tepexochitl, and they covered the skirt of the woman, and the snow covered her breasts and her tights were green for the grass.

And from that day on, both volcanoes became the guardians of the Valley of the Anahuac, they were named Popocatepetl Iztaccihuatl (Smoking Mountain and Sleeping Woman).

About the coward and liar Tlaxcalteca, he died near his homeland, and he became a volcano as well, he was covered in snow and was named Poyautecatl (Lord of Twilight), years later the name was changed to Citualtepetl (Hill of the Star) and from far away he guards the eternal sleep of Popocatepetl Iztaccihuatl.

Those were the times in which the Coyote God and the Hummingbird God were worshiped, and in the Aztec graveyards, Popocatepetl Iztaccihuatl were Gods, and received flowers and song tributes, because from her skirt, water came running and the grass was beautiful.

For many years and right before the Conquista, the maidens that died from unhappy love and a broken heart, were buried on the skirt of Popocatepetl Iztaccihuatl, the lovers that died from sorrow and love, and now were mountains covered in snow.

And this is the legend of Popocatepetl Iztaccihuatl.

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