Remove these ads. Join the Worldbuilders Guild

Tlahuiztli

by hughpierre
Tlahuiztli are war costumes consisting of long sleeves and leggings awarded to various ranks of the military. Every rank wears different colored and decorated tlahuiztli to make them easily distinguished on the battlefield along with pamitl or other military emblems.

Mechanics & Inner Workings

The distinctively decorated suits of the four major militaries groups. Usually made to work as a single piece of clothing with an opening in the back. They cover the entire torso and most extremities of a warrior to offer added protection to the wearer. Tlahuiztli suits are most effective when worn as a pullover that hugs the ichcahuipilli and further covers all the way to the thigh.  

Cuacalalatli

A war helmet carved of amate paper, orchid glue, bone or hardwood like mahogany. The helmet is equipped with a heavy, double-glazed cotton wool fastened under the chin with a cloth leash. They are awarded to soldiers by the state and shaped to represent different animals like howler monkeys, predatory cats, birds, coyotes, or the odd deity.   These helmets protect most of a warriors head from the crown to the jawline and where the warrior sees through the animal's open jaw, however, it is not impenetrable. They are decorated according to the wearer's tlahuiztli, but high-ranking aristocrats order a variety of helmets to include eagles, parrots and deer.  

Pāmitl

The identifying emblems that officers and members of prestigious warrior societies wore on their backs. These are frequently unique to their wearers, and are meant to identify the warrior at a distance. These banners also allow officers to coordinate unit movement. They are made of amate paper spread over frames of reed and ixtle.

Manufacturing process

  1. Fluffed up cotton is soaked in salt water and allowed to dry.
  2. The respun cotton is sewed between two layers of cloth. 
  3. A leather border is stitched around the edges. 
  4. Afterwards, the outward facing side is painted and richly ornamented to the owners' desires with many dyes and coloured feathers.
The strength of their feather-covered garments are proportional to their weapons. So you can tell at a glance, how well they will resist your spears, arrows, or sword.
— an anonymous amanteca from Otoerm Coil

Significance

These suits served as a way to identify warriors according to their achievements in battle as well as rank, alliance, and social status like priesthood or nobility. Tlahuiztli are often reserved for the nobles or elite warriors. Eagle and Jaguar warriors customize theirs with eagle feathers or jaguar hides.   Ranking above these came the nobles of the warrior societies. These are ranked according to the number of captives they had taken in previous battles. The number of captives determined which of the different suits of honour they are allowed to wear, which correlate to allowing them certain rights like:
  • Being able to wear sandals and jewelry
  • Altering their hairstyles
  • Wearing warpaint
  • Carrying flowers onto the battlefield
  • Piercing ornaments onto their ears, lips or labrets
  • Tattooing depictions of the gods and marks of strength on themselves
  These tlahuiztli became gradually more spectacular and flamboyant as the ranks progressed, allowing the most excellent warriors who had taken the most captives to stand out on the battlefield. It is not very heavy or dense as to ensure it does not retain too much body heat. The ichcahuipilli worn under the tlahuiztli is the wearer's primary layer of defense.  

Nahualismo

Tlahuiztli clothing is not culturally thought of as an armor, rather as ritual clothing. The Sang believe that it provides magical protection through means of the spirit of some animal, god or monster possessing the tlahuiztli's wearer to grant the powers of the jaguar, eagle, coyote or tzitzimitl the suit represents.   The tradition of this suit is in memory of the knowledge lost during the great exodus from when warriors wore shadow skins to maul their enemies.
Shadow Skin
Technology / Science | May 15, 2021

Ochpaniztli

A yearly event where provincial tlatoani handout this dress as part of tlacochcalcatl promotions. During the sweeping festival; brave and worthy warriors, who had given military service as tribute to Sangsalgu Proper, have a special period where they poster in front the citizenry.   They are publicly honoured through feasts. dances and some assigned more prestigious positions as part of the wider state bureaucracy.
Tlazolteotl Priest
Profession | Jan 9, 2021

Item type
Armor
Current Location
Subtype / Model
Related Technologies
Related ethnicities
Owning Organization
Rarity
Limited to prestigious warrior societies
Raw materials & Components
  • Animal Hides
  • Leather
  • Cotton or linen fabric
  • Feathers
  • Bone
Related Materials
Conflicts

Cuextecatl

Recognizable by their red and black tlahuiztli and conical hats. This rank is the first military level to be granted a suit after capturing two enemy warriors.   The two captive warrior was formalized in the army after various campaigns against the settlements of Catkills led by many local tlahtoāni over a course of time, and just before the sweep of Salt Side.  

Cicitlallo Cuextecatl

A priest who has taken four captives are named after their tlahuiztli design which resembles the night sky and paired with a conical hat with the same scheme.  

Momoyactli

A priest who has taken five captives wear a blood red tlahuiztli and carry a white and red shield depicting an eagle claw painted across the face and adorned with leather tailings.  

Coyote Warrior Priest

A priest who has taken six or more captives wear an all yellow tlahuiztli (nicknamed the coyote suit) paired with a yellow wooden coyote-shaped helmet adorned with a tailing of green feathers.

Remove these ads. Join the Worldbuilders Guild


Cover image: King Eight Deer Jaguar Claw by Pedro Rafael Mena

Comments

Please Login in order to comment!