The Hero Twins Myth

The Hero Twins Myth

Worksheet Description

Students will answer a series of questions on this topic. It may require some level of research.

The Hero Twins are central figures in the mythology of the ancient Maya civilization, particularly in the Popol Vuh, a sacred text that recounts the creation myth and history of the Quiché Maya people of highland Guatemala.

According to the Popol Vuh, the Hero Twins were born to the maize god, Hun Hunahpu, and his wife Xquic. They were named Hunahpu and Xbalanque, and were gifted with special abilities by their father. The Hero Twins are described as mischievous tricksters, but also as brave warriors and protectors of their people.

The Hero Twins’ most famous exploit is their journey to Xibalba, the Maya underworld, where they outwitted the gods of death and disease in a series of contests and trials. The twins’ success in defeating the lords of Xibalba is said to have brought back their father Hun Hunahpu to life and established their status as legendary heroes in Maya mythology.

The Hero Twins have been depicted in Maya art and iconography, often shown as identical twin youths wearing distinctive headdresses and carrying weapons or other symbols of their power. Their story continues to be celebrated in modern Maya communities, where the Hero Twins are considered to be powerful figures of protection and guidance.