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Unusual Aztec Statue: Xipe Totec

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posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 09:54 AM

Originally posted by AusiAnarchist

Originally posted by randyvs
Some sketchey info on the net about this. You may have seen it before. Anyway I dug it up for ya and I believe the original story behind it is someone shot this guy sometime in the early in 1900s. I think it was Argentina but don't quote me on that.

Maybe some kind of extinct chimp?
edit on 10-6-2011 by randyvs because: (no reason given)

Apparently the existence of a large ape like creature in South America is not completely beyond the realms of possibility. Acording to an article in Wiki called Mono Grande there have been a number of recorded sightings of “marimondas” or “maribundas” between 1533 and 1987. In 1920 François de Loys, a swiss geologist managed to shoot and photograph one of these large ape like creatures. I’ve seen this photo before but didn't know the context until today. Most of his contemporaries claim it was a hoax and I have to concede the creature in the picture has a spider monkey like face but look at its feet and hands.

Ps: Dude looks like he has a fair bit of alabama black snake going on as well, might explain whats going on with the statues junk.

edit on 11-6-2011 by AusiAnarchist because: (no reason given)

Many years ago I was very into odd creatures that had been seen around the world.I read every book I could find on this subject. The creature depicted in this post was rumored to be an unknown great ape that was shot in South America. Supposedly they were known to the natives and were revered. Notice that it has no tail. All monkeys have tails and apes do not. New world monkeys have prehensile tails meaning that they can grasp things like branches with their tails.
Old world monkeys do not have these tails and can not grasp things with the tail.

This creature was rumored to be common in certain areas of South America. They supposedly lived in the deep jungle and kept away from humans.
It may be possible that this is the animal skin depicted in the statue. This creature was supposed to be about 4 feet tall. Perhaps this would explain why the skin does not extend over the arms and legs completely.

Perhaps the twist on the chest is used as one poster said earlier to tighten the skin around the chest, as most apes have a very deep chest. Much deeper than a humans.

I notice that the statue also has what seems to be a compressed skull, much like the odd skulls that have shown up in so many threads here. I wonder if that would indicate that this could be a depiction of a high ranking preist dressed as this god. I seem to remember that only high ranking members of the preist class were allowed to have the skull treatment in their youth. I may be wrong about this.

As always Slayer a great post and terrific find thanks S&F

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 09:57 AM
It looks like a person wearing the skin of someone else, which happened to be shorter than him. Maybe the skin was from a monkey (notice the legs).
edit on 11-6-2011 by Trueman because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 10:09 AM

Originally posted by BlackOops
reply to post by SLAYER69

Maybe it's when the "gods" made the hybrids from ape and man? Looks like a DNA twist on the chest. Interesting.

yes. and the stuff area looks like a mix between male and female...........seems to represent a mix of man and ape...........of some sort....maybe alien and ape.........with the dna sympbol on the chest.........
why would the aztecs worship that........??

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 10:29 AM
Just wanted to thanks everyone who has thus far participated in a great discussion.

I don't know what the complete story is behind the symbolism. We are told it is one thing. But we all know history is not always linear. It as has been stated by some of the links provided can represent many things to those who worshiped and created the statue.

I thought many here would appreciate a mystery

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 10:54 AM

Originally posted by operation mindcrime
reply to post by Schmidt1989

Hi Schmidt1989,

Because there are monkeys in South America and Meso America that have nearly the same appendages and digits? Knowledge of primates can go a long way when trying to prove or debunk something.

According to wiki the primates of the new world weren't very large...

at 55 to 70 cm (22 to 28 in) and a weight of 12 to 15 kg (26 to 33 lbs)

Were these people just very small, did they stretch the skin to fit a person in it, was the suit made from several different monkeys or was there a primate walking around in those days not known to us any longer??

Knowledge of primate does indeed seem handy in this case so maybe you can shed some light on this subject.

edit on 11-6-2011 by operation mindcrime because: forgot the link to wiki

It doesn't matter. It's a symbolic statue, not an actual representation made to scale. This is obvious because they also have statues of themselves wearing bird suits, called eagle warriors.

Surely you don't believe there were birds that large in Central America only 400-600 years ago and no record of them by the Maya or Spanish?

I think it's often forgotten that the Aztec are probably the most well-understood civilization in history. That doesn't mean their aren't still little mysteries here and there, but when Cortez invaded and slaughtered them, forcing them to accept one god and learn spanish, it became easy to understand their culture once their priests became bilingual in Spanish and Nahuatl.

A fun picture:

It was considered an honor to be sacrificed, and one of the only ways into heaven immediately, other than the death of an infant due to illness, etc. Those who were not sacrificed were sent to hell and were on a mission once in the afterlife to reach heaven.

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 10:58 AM

Originally posted by Schmidt1989
Surely you don't believe there were birds that large in Central America only 400-600 years ago and no record of them by the Maya or Spanish?

I think it's often forgotten that the Aztec are probably the most well-understood civilization in history. That doesn't mean their aren't still little mysteries here and there, but when Cortez invaded and slaughtered them, forcing them to accept one god and learn spanish, it became easy to understand their culture once their priests became bilingual in Spanish and Nahuatl.

Speaking of Aztec history, You may find this thread interesting....

The Destruction of Human History

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 11:39 AM
Well, the "head skin" is definitely human, as chimps have huge ears (not to scale on the statue), and are simply too small to fit over a human body. I'll dismiss an ape as well, mostly because it's take a group of aztecs to kill an ape, but then the head would be way to big to fit into. Again, the apes ears are too small, and not positioned properly on the statue (I pulled up images of both apes and chimps).

The hands and feet are a different story. They don't look human. They do look chimpish or apeish, but the location on the statue denotes the donor was smaller than a human, but not chimp sized, and definitely not ape size, as a bit of tailoring of an ape skin would allow a better fit. Very puzzling.

So maybe it is a two piece outfit?

The statue also has another piece of clothing from the waist down, some sort of elaborate costume. If this get up was worn by a god, what possible function could it have?

Hmmm, more questions than answers.

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 11:46 AM
Humm, I had a message that there was a reply to me from you Slayer on page 3, but I dont see it??? Anyway looks like I have a lot of reading to do to catch up here.

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 11:57 AM

Originally posted by Schmidt1989
Surely you don't believe there were birds that large in Central America only 400-600 years ago and no record of them by the Maya or Spanish?

Andean Condor

Although it is on average about five cm shorter from beak to tail than the California Condor, the Andean Condor is larger in wingspan, which ranges from 280 to 320 cm (9.2 to 10.5 ft).[14] It is also typically heavier, reaching a weight of 11 to 15 kg (24 to 33 lb) for males and 6 to 14 kg (13 to 31 lb) for females.[15] Overall length can range from 102 to 135 cm (40 to 53 in).[16] Measurements are usually taken from specimens reared in captivity.[14]

I believe they did......but I'm just screwing with you. You make a valid point and fact remains that this is merely a statue, a piece of art. Look at a Salvador Dali's paintings, they do not correctly resemble life in the 20th century as well, right.

edit on 11-6-2011 by operation mindcrime because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 12:19 PM
reply to post by SLAYER69

Also monkeys have tails, none of the great apes have tails. so unless someone broke off the tail, it's got to be an ape.

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 12:39 PM
Regarding the "braided rope" on the chest:

Various methods of human sacrifice were used to honour this god. The flayed skins were often taken from sacrificial victims who had their hearts cut out, and some representations of Xipe Totec show a stitched-up wound in the chest.


The fact that history says these were human sacrifices is absurd. Who writes this stuff? No wonder our history books are so screwed up. This is obviously not a human, any child could tell you that.

The annual festival of Xipe Totec was celebrated on the spring equinox before the onset of the rainy season, it was known as Tlacaxipehualiztli ("flaying of men in honour of Xipe") and fell in March at the time of the Conquest.

Annually, slaves or captives were selected as sacrifices to Xipe Totec.

After having the heart cut out, the body was carefully flayed to produce a nearly whole skin which was then worn by the priests for twenty days during the fertility rituals that followed the sacrifice.

Human sacrifice

"Gladiator sacrifice" is the name given to the form of sacrifice in which an especially courageous war captive was given mock weapons, tied to a large circular stone and forced to fight against a fully armed Aztec warrior. As a weapon he was given a macuahuitl (a wooden sword with blades formed from obsidian) with the obsidian blades replaced with feathers.

A white cord was tied either around his waist or his ankle, binding him to the sacred temalacatl stone.

At the end of the Tlacaxipehualiztli festival, gladiator sacrifice (known as tlauauaniliztli) was carried out by five Aztec warriors; two jaguar warriors, two eagle warriors and a fifth, left-handed warrior.

"Arrow sacrifice" was another method used by the worshippers of Xipe Totec. The sacrificial victim was bound spread-eagled to a wooden frame, he was then shot with many arrows so that his blood spilled onto the ground.

Other forms of sacrifice were sometimes used; at times the victim was cast into a firepit and burned, others had their throats cut.

The question remains - what is it then?

My vote is some sort of primate or ape. Perhaps the Spider Monkey? Isn't a Spider Monkey one of the images at the Nazca lines?

The hands are long, narrow and hook like, and have reduced thumbs. The fingers are elongated and recurved.


What if they were sacrificed because they were competitors for food?

"Xipe Totec flayed himself to give food to humanity..."

Just some extra thoughts to add to the discussion.

Great Thread. S & F
edit on 11-6-2011 by Julie Washington because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 12:46 PM
reply to post by SLAYER69

The more I look at the picture the less the hand and feet look like a chimp's or gorilla's and more like an orangutan's. (See image link below.)

It seems to make sense anatomically that the "suit" is from an orangutan-like species given the long fingers and toes which would be of use for tree climbing, the opposable thumb on the hand and that the toes on the inside of the feet being nearer to the heels in relation to the other toes. Also with the average height of an orangutan being between 4-5 feet and weighing on average between 75-180 lbs, a human could very well use an orangutan's skin to wear without needing too many adjustments.
Orangutan Anatomy and Physiology

What fascinates me is the thought that maybe there's a species of undiscovered extinct orangutan in Central America! S+F!!

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 01:01 PM

Originally posted by SLAYER69
After breakfast this morning I was surfing through some Aztec and Mayan archeological sites and came across the following image. It in my opinion is very interesting in that it shows an Aztec god wearing what appears to me to be a primates skin and not a human skin which is often how the deity is described. Now, there are various statues showing Xipe Totec [The god in question] but the following representation caught my eye. I thought some here would appreciate the find.

What peaked my curiosity were the feet and hands of the supposed human skin their god is wearing. Now according to what we understand or are told rather the deity wears the skin of a human body over his as part of a ritualistic representation of renewal. The question I have is where did they come up with the design for his feet and hands? I know some will say "obviously a monkey" Well to me they look very ape or chimp like. There are no Chimps or Apes in the new world. Only much smaller monkeys. Sure it could be a Mexican Black handed Spider monkey but they are much too small for a normal sized human to wear their skin.

So here again we have a conflict with what we are told: The god wears the skin of Human victims vs what we see with our own eyes. The god is "Wearing what appears to be an Apes or Chimps skin"

So which is it?

Your thoughts?

The Story of Xipe Totec

Xipe Totec is associated with many different things to the Aztecs....

Xipe was primarily a god of renewal and regeneration; symbolized by the flaying and wearing of the skins of sacrificial victims. As a god of renewal and regeneration, Xipe Totec was a god of the earth and agriculture. Renewal and regeneration is important to agricultural cultures, who often believe that rains are sent by the gods and that the fertility of the earth is god's work.

As for Xipe's involvement in cults, it has been hypothesized that Xipe's origins relate to a cult that believed that Xipe was a lord of liberation; suggesting that the skin and flesh of the human body is what is keeping the soul hostage, making Xipe Totec a lord of bondage.

Hey there SLAYER,

I haven't read all the replies yet so I apologize if this has already been mentioned ... I agree that the hands and feet of the flayed skin look more primate than human ... but when I found out that Xipe Totec was also known as Youalahaun which translates as 'Night Drinker' ... for some reason it made me think of Big Foot.

I know it is presumed that Big Foot is 7ft + ... but legends of the ancient God's who walked the Earth as men were also said to be much bigger ... in some cases even giants compared to we humans.

Ok bear with me a moment longer.

What if Xipe Totec is depicted in this piece to be wearing the flayed skin of something that was either the preliminary of humans (as we know them today) ... but more elevated than a primate species (that we would recognize today) ... what is commonly referred to as the 'Missing Link' ?

And maybe the helix twist on the chest area is there to display what the future (to that time) human DNA would become !

Just typing out loud ... but interesting nonetheless S&F for you SLAYER


posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 01:19 PM
Well those two last replies are very interesting. So what do we have on the table thus far....

It symbolizes Evolution, showing signs of DNA etc or It's simply a stylized known "monkey skin" suit, Alligator/Croc- Alien Reptilian skin suit, Someone mentioned a Sloth or an as of yet to be identified unknown larger American primate.

All good candidates

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 01:28 PM
if anything those look like reptilian hands and feet then anything
edit on 11-6-2011 by WanderingThe3rd because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 02:04 PM

Originally posted by BlackOops
reply to post by SLAYER69

Maybe it's when the "gods" made the hybrids from ape and man? Looks like a DNA twist on the chest. Interesting.

That was exactly my thought the first second I saw it!

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 02:12 PM
Check out this image: Wearing the Skin and Holding the Head of a Sacrificed Victim

Bowers Museum

Huastec Sculpture of a Priest Wearing the Skin of a Sacrificed Victim
This pre-Columbian sculpture shows a priest wearing the skin of a sacrifice victim and impersonating the god Xipe Totec.

© Bowers Museum of Cultural Art/CORBIS

ca. 600-800 A.D.

Don Wiechec

Corbis Museum

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 02:35 PM
reply to post by SLAYER69

Fascinating post....I don't know if anyone has mentioned it yet...but there is some tantalizing evidence that a South American Ape does indeed exists. It basically comes down to one old photograph of a dead one. [EDIT] I just noticed that this ape has already been mentioned in this thread....oh well....Enjoy the clip, if anything

edit on 11-6-2011 by bhornbuckle75 because: blah blah blah

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 03:06 PM
just throwing something out there, maybe this "god" or alien had breed with monkeys and created humanity? you never know...

posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 03:07 PM
reply to post by Julie Washington

That image of a skin suit statue is undoubtedly more "human-looking" than the picture in the OP! The hands and feet of the skin suit are identical to the priest's hands and feet giving more evidence to the assertion that the OP's image is not of a human's skin suit but that of another creature!

I've also looked into images of hands and feet of reptiles and amphibians to try and get a mental picture of the possibility that the creature's skin in the OP is of a reptile or amphibian origin but what keeps me from seriously considering the skin suit to be of those two options are the feet. I can't see a possible reptile-like humanoid being capable to naturally walk bipedally with inside toes like that in the OP.
Also, with the feet and hands having a pronounced curvature to them, I would speculate that the animal portrayed lived the majority of it's life in trees.

This is pure speculation on my part, but I wonder if orangutans, while not being "native" to that part of the world, were brought over (dead or alive) in enough numbers by the Polynesians to allow Mesoamerican societies to become aware of them enough to incorporate orangutans into their arts and religious beliefs. The native area for orangutans and Central America are both located along the same latitudes, so the environment would appear to be acceptable for such an animal.
It's interesting to note that Xipe Totec was believed to wear the skins evil people and the orangutan has been known to on occasion rape or attempt to rape human women. That in itself could be enough to regard the orangutan as an "evil person." Damn this is one awesome thread.

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