Atotoztli (MH744v)

Atotoztli (MH744v)
Compound Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This black-line drawing of the compound glyph of the personal name, Atotoztli (perhaps having something to do with water and yellow parrots) is attested here as a woman’s name. This was a famous name in pre-contact Tenochtitlan, worn for example by the daughter of the first Motecuhzoma, and she may have ruled the Triple Alliance herself for up to thirty years. See Cecelia Klein, Gender in Prehispanic Mexico (2001, 333), for more information about her. The glyph starts with the head of a parrot in profile, facing toward the viewer’s right. The bird’s eye is open, as is its beak. Coming down from the bird’s head are three streams of water, each one with a line of current (movement) down the middle and a droplet at the bottom. The droplets each have a black dot in the center.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

This woman in Huexotzinco also had some status, given how she appears inside what may be a teccalli (lordly house). See the contextualizing image. The “Lady Atotoztli” (daughter of Motecuhzoma I) appears in Wikipedia ( with her compound glyph somewhat different from this one. In that example, two parrot heads appear (a visual reduplication), plus a yellow feather, and three little streams of water. It is not absolutely clear that the water in either of these compounds is logographic, as it could be providing the phonetic indication that the name starts with A-.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Gloss Image: 
Date of Manuscript: 


Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Huejotzingo, Puebla

Writing Features: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Jeff Haskett-Wood

Parts (compounds or simplex + notation): 
Reading Order (Compounds or Simplex + Notation): 

loros, amarillo, agua, nombres de mujeres, nombres famosos

Glyph or Iconographic Image: 
Relevant Nahuatl Dictionary Word(s): 
Glyph/Icon Name, Spanish Translation: 

posiblemente, Loro Amarillo del Agua

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 

Matrícula de Huexotzinco, folio 744v, World Digital Library,

Image Source, Rights: 

This manuscript is hosted by the Library of Congress and the World Digital Library; used here with the Creative Commons, “Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License” (CC-BY-NC-SAq 3.0).

Historical Contextualizing Image: 
See Also: