The Other Flying Serpent

Author(s): William Ringle

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Tales of the Feathered Serpent: Refining Our Understanding of an Enigmatic Mesoamerican Being" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

From at least the Epiclassic period onward, the Feathered Serpent was frequently accompanied by a Cloud Serpent. In the mythology of the Nahuas he was known as Mixcoatl or Camaxtli in his anthropomorphic form, and was either the father or half-brother of Quetzalcoatl. A patron of the hunt, he was also associated with warfare and was central to the pantheons of Tlaxcala and Huexotzinco. A Mixcoatl also functioned prominently in the Mexica peregrinación.

Archaeologically, depictions of the Cloud Serpent at Chichen Itza, in the codices of the Mixteca-Puebla region, and at Tula and Tenochtitlan, among others, strongly suggest a deeper connection with the ideology associated with the feathered serpent. This paper will examine several of these contexts to better understand this connection, making especial use of the Tlaxcalan historical record.

Cite this Record

The Other Flying Serpent. William Ringle. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 450959)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24922