Xelhua is one of the seven giants in Aztec mythology who escaped the flood by ascending the mountain of Tlaloc in the terrestrial paradise, and afterwards built the Great Pyramid of Cholula. A Dominican monk wrote this account:
Before the great inundation which took place 4,800 years after the erection of the world, the country of Anahuac was inhabited by giants, all of whom either perished in the inundation or were transformed into fishes, save seven who fled into caverns.
When the waters subsided, one of the giants, called Xelhua, surnamed the 'Architect,' went to Cholula, where, as a memorial of the Tlaloc which had served for an asylum to himself and his six brethren, he built an artificial hill in the form of a pyramid. He ordered bricks to be made in the province of Tlalmanalco, at the foot of the Sierra of Cecotl, and in order to convey them to Cholula he placed a file of men who passed them from hand to hand. The gods beheld, with wrath, an edifice the top of which was to reach the clouds. Irritated at the daring attempt of Xelhua, they hurled fire on the pyramid. Numbers of the workmen perished. The work was discontinued, and the monument was afterwards dedicated to Quetzalcoatl.—
Xelhua was a giant of the "time of the universal deluge." He was one of the seven giants in the Aztec culture. Before the pyramid in Mesoamerica was complete, "fire fell upon it, causing the death of its builders and the abandonment of the work."
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