Avanyu is the water serpent deity of the Pueblo tribes of Arizona and New Mexico, often depicted on San Ildefonso and Santa Clara Pueblo pottery. The Avanyu symbolizes the importance of water to indigenous desert cultures. This symbol is also associated with lightning as shown by the serpent’s tongue. Avanyu appears on the walls of caves located high above washes and rivers in New Mexico and Arizona. It is also believed Avanyu may be related to the feathered serpent of Mexico – Quetzalcoatl, and a companion to the Kokopelli. Overall, Avanyu is a frequent and important motif in Southwestern Native American cultures, especially through pottery.

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