John Pohl, THE CODICES John Pohl's

ANCIENT BOOKS: Borgia Group Codices

In contrast to the more historical and genealogical orientation of Mixtec codices, the Borgia Group emphasizes divinatory calendars, rituals, and the pantheon of Nahua gods described by Colonial historians like Bernardino de Sahagún, Diego Durán, and many others.

Codex Borgia features a page by page portrayal of the various divisions of the sacred 260 day calendar or tonalpohualli (toe-nall-po-wha-lee). Pages 61-70 illustrates the division of the calendar into trecenas, twenty "months" of thirteen days. A different god presides over each trecena. For example Itzpapalotl or "Obsidian Butterfly" is patroness of the fifteenth trecena. According to legend Itzpapalotl was a demon who was cast down to earth from a heavenly paradise called Tamoanchan. She was subsequently defeated and killed by the Chichimeca during their migration from the seven sacred caves of Chicomoztoc to Tula-Tollan, the capitol of the Toltecs.

Image - Itzpapalotl
Click on image to enlarge.

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