Real Name: Tezcatlipoca
Occupation: God of darkness, sin and vice, former sun-god, former ruler of Teotihucan, tutelary deity of Tezcoco, tutelary god of the Aztecs
Legal Status: Citizen of Xibalba
Identity: The modern population of earth is unaware of Tezcatlipoca except as a mythological deity.
Other Aliases: Bacabs (Mayan name), Ah Cilix (Olmec name), Tzahui (Mixtec name), Tajin (Totanec name), God L (mythological designation), Omacatl ("two reeds"), Telpochtli ("Lord of Festivals"), Yaotl ("warrior"), Yoalli Ehecatli ("Night Wind"), Tepeyollotli ("Heart of the Mountain"), Titlacauepan ("He Who Is Closest To Shoulder"), Ixliltou, Izlacoliuhqui, Moquequeloa, Moyocoyani ("Maker of Himself"), Toueyo (mortal alias)
Place of Birth: Unrevealed, possibly Colhuacan, Mexico
Marital Status: Married
Known Relatives: Tonacatecuhtli (father), Tonacacihuatl (mother), Mixcoatl, Camaxtli, Xipe-Totec (brothers), Tlacolteotl (sister/wife), Itzli, Ahpuch (sons), Mictlantecuhtli (daughter), Camazotz, Xecotocovah, Cotzbalam, Tecibalam (sons by Xilonen), Quetzalcoatl, Huitzilopochtli, Cineteotl (nephews), Xochiquetzal, Coyoxauhqui (nieces), Chamer (grandson), Ixtab (granddaughter),
Group Affiliation: The Gods of Mexico; Council of Godheads;
Base of Operations: Xibalba, formerly Teotihuacan (now part of modern Mexico City)
First Appearance: Thor I #300
History: Tezcatlipoca is a member of an extra-dimensional race of beings known as the Coatli who were worshipped as gods by the ancient Aztec and Mayan Empires. He was one of the four sons of the ancient primeval gods Tonacatecuhtli and Tonacacihuatl, who granted the Aztecs the calendar and showed them how to use it to grow and produce food during the proper seasons of the year. According to some myths, Tonacatecuhtli and Tonacacihuatl had four sons who were each named Tezcatlipoca but were identified only by color. As they acquired worshippers, these sons acquired names from the native Nahuatl language of their worshippers. Tezcatlipoca and his brothers, Mixcoatl, Camaxtli and Xipe-Totec each represented certain cardinal points of the earth with collaborating colors. Tezcatlipoca was the black god of the north, Mixcoatl the white god of the west, Camaxtli the red god of the east and Xipe Totec the blue god of the south. These roles later changed with Tlaloc the water-god taking Xipe Totec's place and Camaztli eclipsed by his son, Huitzilopochtli, the war-god. Mixcoatl was succeeded by his son, Quetzalcoatl, the god of wisdom and culture. Later myths, as a result, later erroneously referred to Tlaloc, Huitzilopochtli and Quetzalcoatl as brothers of Tezcatlipoca.
As a young god, Tezcatlipoca served as the god of the sun who separated the day from night. He also became the tutelary deity of the city of Texcoco upon which the city of Tenochitlan was built. He was the patron god of the ancient Toltecs, the ancestors of the later Aztecs, and encouraged them in conquering and supplanting all neighboring tribes to create the Aztec Empire. The Aztec Empire conquered much of the same land as the earlier Mayan Empire now in decline. The Aztecs and the Mayans both seemed to share many of the same gods such as Tlaloc, known to the Mayans as Chaac, but Tezcatlipoca never seemed to supplant Itzamna, the Ruler of the Coatli, instead becoming lord over the Aztec gods, a separate group of gods apart from the Mayan gods within the Ancient Mexican pantheon.
Unlike Itzamna, Tezcatlipoca encouraged violent blood sacrifices from his worshippers with mortal hearts of warriors served to honor him. He was always at odds with Quetzalcoatl, however, who was opposed to sacrifice. During a visit to the underworld of Mictlan ruled by Ahpuch, the gates closed on part of Tezcatlipoca's leg, severing from him in the process. Quetzalcoatl tossed to feed Cipactli, the earth-serpent; the leg was subsequently replaced for one made of obsidian by the god, Itzli. Eventually, Quetzalcoatl was actually able to depose Tezcatlipoca as ruler of Teotihuacan and turned him into a jaguar. Tezcatlipoca escaped to the sea, but Quetzalcoatl was eventually in turn deposed by Tlaloc, the water-god, who conjured a great wind and storm on earth. Taking the throne himself, Tlaloc would be replaced by his own wife, Chalchihuitlicue, by creating a flood then taking Quetzalcoatl as her new husband to rule by her side.
Tezcatlipoca eventually returned disguised as a peasant named Toueyo to Tula, the city under protection of Quetzalcoatl. In disguise, Tezcatlipoca offered Quetzalcoatl a drink made from the juice of the maguey cactus claiming it would ease his heart and banish thoughts of death. His appearance had also dismayed Quetzalcoatl's daughter and put her into malaise. Quetzalcoatl had purposely called Toueyo to cure her of her illness, but Tezcatlipoca actually shared a bed with her and became son-in-law to Quetzalcoatl and his potential successor to the throne.
Tezcatlipoca next created a series of misfortunes designed to destroy the Toltecs, the rivals of the Aztecs, but stopped each time just short of wiping them out completely. He entertained them by creating a duplicate of Huitzilopochtli and announcing he had done through by witchcraft. The fearful Toltecs then stoned the duplicate to death, but the corpse putrefied and smelled so bad it had to dragged away by ropes. Everyone who had dragged the corpse away eventually died as a result. He eventually predicted that a volcano was going to explode and impersonated an old woman who sold tickets offering protection from the volcano. Everyone who bought a ticket were taken as sacrifices. Still disguised as the old woman, Tezcatlipoca turned all their food bad, and with all the people close to starvation, he roasted maize to attract the remaining Toltecs. As they came to get the maize, Tezcatlipoca slew the remaining Toltecs.
With no subjects left to rule, Quetzalcoatl and his surviving retinue traveled to Anahuac with Tezcatlipoca terrorizing him along the way with demons asking for payment to allow him to travel. Some of the demons told Quetzalcoatl that for them to allow him to pass, he had to sample their wine. Disguised as Titlacauepan, Tezcatlipoca offered him wine, and Quetzalcoatl became drunk as a result, breaking one one of his priestly vows and raping his daughter, the wine-goddess Quetzalpetlatl. Tezcatlipoca then used his mirror to revealed to Quetzalcoatl that he had become an aged decrepit old man. Fearful his subjects would not recognize him, Quetzalcoatl fled and forced himself into self-imposed exile promising to return in a certain number of years. He then traveled in search of the realm of Tlillan-Tlapallan to have his youth restored then departed the Earth promising to return and convert back to a land of paradise.
In Quetzalcoatl's absence, Tezcatlipoca took Xochiquetzal, the flower-goddess, as his wife, taking her away from Tlaloc in the process. He seized the throne of the Toltecs on behalf of the invading Aztecs, but as the date for Quetzalcoatl's return came, Spaniards from across the ocean lead by Hernando Cortex invaded Tenochitlan, the Aztec capital, to claim it for Spain. At the landing of Cortez and his conquistadors, many of the Aztecs welcomed him, thinking he was Quetzalcoatl at last returning to his homeland. Aztec Emperor Montezuma II also welcomed Cortez, but he was killed as Cortez lead enforcements to take the area. Tezcatlipoca, however, was forbidden to get involved. Around 1000 AD, he had made a pact with the sky-fathers of the other pantheons of earth to discuss the possible threat to Earth by the Third Celestial Host and was forced to pledge not to interfere with the destiny of mortal men. Due to the pact, Tezcatlipoca later voluntarily offered a portion of the life energies to the Asgardian thunder-god Thor required to revive the Asgardians after the Fourth Host of the Celestials.
True to his complex character, Tezcatlipoca proved he was not a malevolent deity by remaining a member of the Council Elite comprising the heads of the pantheons of Earth and met with them later to discuss the threat of the primeval entity Demogorge. Quetzalcoatl was sent to confront it on behalf of Itzamna, along with a host of other godly champions from rival pantheons. Tezcatlipoca and Itzamna also met with the other godheads to discuss the threat Thanos the Eternal posed with the Infinity Gauntlet and was briefly stranded in Asgard with the others when Thanos shattered the Rainbow Bridge, Bifrost, which connected it to Earth.
On Earth, however, a mysterious cult devoted to Quetzalcoatl feared Tezcatlipoca's return to earth. Calling themselves the Q-Society, the cult funded an organization to prepare for Tezcatlipoca's return; their ultimate goal was to create a vessel for Quetzalcoatl's power to battle Tezcatlipoca should he return to earth. This champion was named Aztek and became a member of the Justice League of America. During this time, Tezcatlipoca promised the mortal rock star Adam Case with illusions of power instead became disenchanted with his plotting and left Case alone to his ramblings. Aztek meanwhile had been killed fighting an entity named Mageddon.
In recent years, a young girl named Chama Sierra bargained with the demon Neron to gain the power and name of Tezcatlipoca. It is unaware if Tezcatlipoca was involved in Sierra's bargain for power or her later defeat by Green Arrow.
Despite a significant lack of modern-day worshippers, it seems that there is
still very much enmity between Tezcatlipoca and Quetzalcoatl. In at least one
alternate quantum reality, Tezcatlipoca was again usurped in his role as Ruler
of the Aztec Gods by Quetzalcoatl. In this timeline, Quetzalcoatl became a
member of the Council of Godheads to discuss the menace of
the Egyptian god Seth conquering Asgard, the home of the Asgardian gods.
Height: 6' 2"
Weight: 535 lbs.
Hair: White (Black in his youth)
Unusual Physical Features: Tezcatlipoca is missing part of his right leg and instead wears a "prosthetic" constructed of enchanted obsidian.
Strength Level: Tezcatlipoca possesses superhuman strength enabling him to lift (press) 50 tons under optimal conditions.
Known Superhuman Powers: Tezcatlipoca possesses the conventional physical attributes of the Coatli or Gods of Mexico. Like all members of his race; Tezcatlipoca is extremely long-lived but he is not immortal like the Olympian Gods. He ages at an extremely slow rate and cannot die by any known conventional means. He is immune to all known terrestrial diseases and is invulnerable to conventional injury. If wounded, his godly life force would enable him to recover with superhuman speed. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it dispersed a major portion of his bodily molecules to cause him a physical death. Even then, it might be possible for Itzamna or a number of gods of equal power working together to revive him. Tezcatlipoca does have some superhuman strength and his own Coatli metabolism gives him far greater than human endurance in all physical activities. (The flesh and bone of the Coatli gods is about three times denser than similar human tissue contributing to the superhuman strength and weight of the Aztec and Mayan Gods. )
Tezcatlipoca has extensive abilities to tap into and manipulate mystical energies of an unknown nature. He is possibly equal to Seth or Hades in power, enabling him to manipulate energy, cross dimensions and to alter his form and appearance. In line with his powers, he rewards righteous men, but makes evil men ill though a variety of means, though usually through disease. He can be invisible and impalpable, and bestow on mankind the gifts of intelligence and understanding. With a single glance, he can pierce stones and trees and even the hearts of mortals so that he can read mankind's innermost thoughts. With a single thought, he can create or destroy. He can travel between dimensions, such as from Xibalba to Earth and descend on a strand of gossamer resembling a spider web. He can also transform into animals, usually an ocelot or jaguar.
Weaponry/Paraphernalia: Tezcatlipoca has a mystical smoking mirror which reflected the true natures of anyone who looked in it. It also may have other mystical properties, but many of these have yet to be revealed.
Comments: This bio includes Tezcatlipoca in the Marvel Universe, DC Universe and Rifts World continuity. He is also mentioned by name in Kolchak: The Night Stalker (Episode: The Mummy).
Contrary to his appearance in DC Comics as a evil character, Tezcatlipoca has an apparent dual nature and can be seen as either benevolent or maligned, but he is not a malevolent deity.
Clarifications: Tezcatlipoca is not to be confused with:
Last updated: 07/30/13
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