Tlazolteotl (Tlaculteutl) (lady of dirt) In Aztec mythology, sex goddess who produced lust and then forgave the sinner. The ritual freeing people from sins included a number of confessions to the priests of this goddess. The people would then be freed of all sins committed throughout their lives, and they would also be released them from any legal consequences. They were only allowed one such confession in a lifetime.

According to Fray Bernardino de Sahagún in Historia general de las cosas de Nueva España (1570–1582), the goddess was also known as Ixcuina (two-faced) and had four aspects: the goddesses Tiacapán, Teicu, Tlacotl, and Xocutzin. All four “had the power to produce lust” and “could provoke carnal intercourse and favoured illicit love affairs.” These four aspects of the goddess are believed by C. A. Burland in The Gods of Mexico (1967) to be “the four phases of the moon” and associate the goddess with witchcraft.



Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow
Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante

Tlazolteotl : Eater of Filth; Goddess of Garbage; Lady of Confessions

Tlazolteotl is the spirit of magic, healing, love, sex, desire, cleansing, and garbage. As goddess of filth, Tlazolteotl cleanses individuals and Earth of spiritual debris, sin, and shame. Tlazolteotl is credited with invention of the Aztec sweat bathhouse, the temescal.




Female healers, midwives, witches, and weavers


A famous statue of Tlazolteotl portrays her as a naked, squatting woman grimacing in labor: this image appears as the stolen idol in Raiders of the Lost Ark. Other traditional images show her riding on a broomstick, naked except for a peaked hat made of bark.




Owls, ravens, vultures




Bats, snakes


Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses– Written by Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.

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