Similarities and Differences Between Zeus, Jupiter,Hades, and Ah Puch

Essay by AcoleUniversity, Bachelor'sA, December 2012

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Similarities and Differences Between Zeus, Jupiter, Hades and Ah Puch

When looking at the Greek Olympians Hades, God of the Underworld, and Zeus, Father of Gods and Men and God of the Sky, one is able to draw similarities and differences between these characters and the Roman God, Jupiter, and the Mayan God, Ah Puch.

Firstly, the Mayan God, Ah Puch, can be directly compared and contrasted with the Greek God, Hades. Both are considered to be Gods of the Underworld, have equivalents in other cultures, are accompanied by dog figures, and are feared and loathed by men/humans. However, both gods are different in their appearance, have different weapons and powers, are characterized slightly differently, and have different methods of ruling.

Like Hades, the Mayan god Ah Puch is the God of death, the underworld, disaster, and darkness. Ah Puch, who's Aztec equivalent is Mictlantecuhtli, ruled Mitnal, the lowest level of the Mayan underworld.

Because he ruled death, he was closely allied with the gods of war, sacrifice, and disease. Like the Aztecs, Mayans associated death with dogs and owls, so a dog or an owl generally accompanied Ah Puch. Additionally, Mayans were much more fearful of death than other Mesoamerican cultures - Ah Puch was seen as a hunting figure that stalked the houses of people who were injured or sick. Mayans typically engaged in extremely loud mourning after the death of loved ones. It was believed that the loud wailing would scare Ah Puch away and prevent him from taking anybody else down to Mitnal with him (Cline 1). Mayan depictions of Ah Puch were either of a skeletal figure with protruding ribs and a death's-head skull or of a figure that suggested an advanced state of decomposition. Because of his...