Index  Previous  Next 

p. 85

II. Chapter 10

Afterward they entered the House of Cold. It is impossible to describe how cold it was. The house was full of hail; it was the mansion of cold. Soon, however, the cold was ended because with [a fire of] old logs the boys made the cold disappear.

That is why they did not die; they were still alive when it dawned. Surely what the Lords of Xibalba wanted was that they would die; but it was not thus, and when it dawned, they were still full of health, and they went out again, when the messengers came to get them.

"How is this? They are not dead yet?" said the Lords of Xibalba. They were amazed to see the deeds of Hunahpú and Xbalanqué.

Presently the boys [entered] the House of Jaguars. The house was full of jaguars. "Do not bite us! Here is what belongs to you," 1 [the boys] said to the jaguars. And quickly they threw some bones to the animals, which pounced upon the bones.

"Now surely they are finished. Now already they have eaten their own entrails. At last they have given themselves up. Now their bones have been broken, "so said the guards, all happy because of this.

p. 86

But they [the boys] did not die. As usual, well and healthy, they came out of the House of Jaguars.

"What kind of people are they? Where did they come from?" said all the Lords of Xibalba.

Presently they [the boys] entered into the midst of fire in the House of Fire, inside which there was only fire; but they were not burned. Only the coals and the wood burned. And, as usual, they were well when it dawned. But what they [the Lords of Xibalba] wished was that [the boys] would die rapidly, where they had been. Nevertheless, it did not happen thus, which disheartened the Lords of Xibalba.

Then they put them into the House of Bats. There was nothing but bats inside this house, the house of Camazotz, 2 a large animal, whose weapons for killing were like a dry point, 3 and instantly those who came into their presence perished. 4

They [the boys] were in there, then, but they slept inside their blowguns. And they were not bitten by those who were in the house. Nevertheless, one of them had to give up because of another Camazotz that came from the sky, and made him come into sight.

The bats were assembled in council all night, and flew about: "Quilitz, quilitz," they said: So they were saying all night. They stopped for a little while, however, and they did not move and were pressed against the end of one of the blowguns.

Then Xbalanqué said to Hunahpú: "Look you, has it begun already to get light?"

"Maybe so. I am going to see," [Hunahpú] answered.

And as he wished very much to look out of the mouth of the blowgun, and wished to see if it had dawned, instantly

p. 87

[paragraph continues] Camazotz cut off his head and the body of Hunahpú was decapitated.

Xbalanqué asked again: "Has it not yet dawned?" But Hunahpú did not move. "Where have you gone, Hunahpú? What have you done?" But he did not move, and remained silent.

Then Xbalanqué felt concerned and exclaimed: "Unfortunate are we. We are completely undone."

They went immediately to hang the head [of Hunahpú] in the ball-court by special order of Hun-Camé and Vucub-Camé, and all the people of Xibalba rejoiced for what had happened to the head of Hunahpú.


87:1 p. 220 Qo yvech ch'uxic, literally, "yours shall be what is here." Ximénez translates this passage thus: "This must be your food!" reading yvecha instead of the possessive yvech, "yours."

87:2 Death Bat. The vampire bat god of the Maya códices appears with the sacrificial knife in one hand and his victim in the other.

87:3 Chaqui tzam, "dry point"; it may be understood here as referring to the burnt staff, hardened in the fire.

87:4 Huzu ch'utzinic ch'opon chi qui vach, in the original. Chupan in Brasseur de Bourbourg through an error in copying.

Next: II. Chapter 11