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Chac

by Henk Jan van Schevicoven
The Mayan god of fertility and agriculture, the one who sends thunder and rain. Later he appears as one of the Bacabs, a group of four protective deities, where Chac is the personification of the east. The center of his cult was in Chichen Itzan (Yucatan). He is the Tlaloc of the Aztec and the rain god Cocijo of the Zapotec. Chac is portrayed with two curling fangs, a long turned-up nose and tears streaming from his wide eyes. His hair was made up of a tangle of knots.

Chac was beneficent and a friend of man. He taught them how to grow vegetables and was the protector of their cornfields. The Maya appealed to him for rain by means of particular ceremonies by which the men would settle outside the village and adhere to strict observance of fasting and sexual abstinence. The animal associated with Chac is the frog, because it signals the coming of rain by its croaking.

He is also known as Ah Hoya ("he who urinates"), Ah Tzenul ("he who gives food to others"), and Hopop Caan ("he who lights up the sky").


Article details:

  • Also known as:
    Chac Mol

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