John Pohl, THE CODICES John Pohl's

ANCIENT BOOKS: Mixtec Group Codices

The Day Signs

The people portrayed in the codicies were named after their birthdates in the sacred calendar. This divinatory calendar consisted of two hundred and sixty days believed to represent nine months, the average period of human gestation. All days and numbers were ascribed either positive or negative qualities in the spiritual universe. Ascribing the predictions for a numeral and day sign in the divinatory day count to an actual day of birth in the 365-day solar calendar allowed court diviners to make predictions as to the fate of a child. Many times the year is portrayed and most events are portrayed with year and a day date as well.

Day Signs

The sacred calendar relied on the combination of a series of thirteen numerical dots with a series of twenty day signs. The count began with the first day of the year, 1 Crocodile, and proceeded with a normal numerical progression. After 13 Reed was reached the numerical count was started all over again. Thus the day following 13 Reed was 1 Jaguar. When the day Flower was reached, it was time to start counting the day Crocodile over again with its corresponding number. Thus 8 Crocodile was the twenty-first day of the year and so on. Counting 365 days allowed one to compose a full solar year.

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