In Aztec mythology, Coatlicue (”she with serpent skirts”) is the mother of the 400 stars in the sky, and one daughter, Coyolxauhqui (”she with bells on her cheeks”). When Coatlicue becomes pregnant illegitimately by touching a tuft of hummingbird feathers, her children become both embarrassed and enraged. But none more so than her daughter, Coyolxauhqui. Together with her 400 brothers, she launches an attack on her mother, but it is foiled when her mother’s unborn son Huitzilopochtli (”the hummingbird on the left”) springs forth from her womb, armed for battle.
Huitzilopochtli dismembers Coyolxauhqui, and flings her head into the sky where it becomes the moon, so that her mother might look upon her always.
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