acatl (Mdz2r)

acatl (Mdz2r)

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This example of iconography from the Codex Mendoza shows what appears to be an acatl (reed) plant with its roots above the ground. This provides a comparison for other acatl plants that are elements of compound hieroglyphs. The plant grows largely upright, but it has branches or leaves that curve out horizontally, with the tips pointing upwards. The plant is shown as a turquoise blue, and the roots here are white.

Added Analysis: 

Wikipedia has published a photo of acatl plants.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Source Manuscript: 
Date of Manuscript: 

by 1553 at the latest

Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Mexico City

Semantic Categories: 
Cultural Content & Iconography: 
Shapes and Perspectives: 

reeds, cañas

Glyph or Iconographic Image: 
Relevant Nahuatl Dictionary Word(s): 

aca(tl), reed, cane, reed-arrow, reed-dart,

Glyph/Icon Name, Spanish Translation: 

la caña

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 
Image Source, Rights: 

Original manuscript is held by the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, MS. Arch. Selden. A. 1; used here with the UK Creative Commons, “Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License” (CC-BY-NC-SAq 3.0)