Mythical Jaguar Native American Skull Ring
In many cultures across Mexico, Central, and South America, Jaguars carry a great deal of cultural and religious significance. In Aztec culture, Jaguars were often associated with strength, war, royalty and magical power. The greatest rank of Aztec warriors was popularly referred to as the “Jaguar Knights" or “Jaguar Warriors". Aztec and other Mesoamerican sorcerers and shamans also widely considered Jaguars to be spiritual creatures.
Jaguars were also associated with the night and underworld by the Mayas; a Jaguar is usually used to represent the underworld's Classical Mayan god. Similar to how North American culture views bears, Jaguars are considered to be a symbol of courage, power, strength and spirituality all across Central and South America. In some South and Central American cultures, the jaguar is also considered to be a clan animal.
In other folklore and indigenous mythology, Jaguars also adopt a wide array of roles such as those of fierce warriors, deadly monsters, and strong and knowledgeable leaders. Some have even attributed shapeshifting abilities to Jaguars as well, and many legends suggest that these creatures also intermarried with humans.
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