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   Chocolate Mythology

Aztec Indian legend held that cacao seeds had been brought from Paradise and that wisdom and power came from eating the fruit of the cacao tree. Ancient chronicles report that the Aztecs, believing that the god Quetzalcoatl travelled to earth on a beam of the Morning Star with a cacao tree from Paradise, took his offering to the people. They learned from Quetzalcoatl how to roast and grind the cacao seeds, making a nourishing paste that could be dissolved in water.

They added spices and called this drink "chocolatl," or bitter-water, and believed it brought universal wisdom and knowledge. Quetzalcoatl was cast out of paradise for the blasphemous act of giving this sacred drink to humans. (The gods felt that only they should have access to chocolate.)

Priests often made offerings of cacao seeds to Quetzalcoatl and these other deities The word "chocolate" is said to derive from the Mayan "xocoatl"; cocoa from the Aztec "cacahuatl." The Mexican Indian word "chocolate" comes from a combination of the terms choco ("foam") and atl ("water"); early chocolate was only consumed as a beverage.

Chocolate was consumed by the Gods in Paradise, and the seed of cocoa was given to man as a special blessing by the God of Mexican mythology. Tonacatecutli, the goddess of food, and Calchiuhtlucue, the goddess of water, were guardian goddesses of cocoa. Each year they performed human sacrifices for the goddesses, giving the victim cocoa at his last meal.

 

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