Cuauhxomolco (Mdz41r)

Cuauhxomolco (Mdz41r)
Compound Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This compound glyph for the place name Cuauhxomolco includes a corner (xomolli) merged with a tree (cuahuitl). The -co (locative suffix) is not shown visually. The cuahuitl has diagonal and parallel black lines on its trunk, one thin and one thick. There is one leader, three branches, and four clumps of two-tone green vegetation.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

The definitive translation of this compound glyph if elusive. It may refer to the corner of some woods, or a corner or nook with snakes. The Gran Diccionario del Náhuatl concurs with the transliteration of this town's name that starts with Cuauh- as opposed to Coa-.

Compare this glyph with the other one for the same town, which has also been included from the Codex Mendoza in this collection. There are some interesting variations. One includes the tree element, and the other does not. One reinforces or complements the xomolli with the "mol" of molli, and the other does not. Both have beautiful right angles (geometry).
The black stripes (tlilcuahuitl) on the tree trunk are phonetic indicators that this sign is a tree (cuahuitl), something I discovered independently, but which has also been pointed out by Brígida von Mentz ("De árboles, raíces, y locativos en la iconografía del México antiguo," Tlalocan 15, 2008, 216–219).

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Gloss Image: 
Gloss Diplomatic Transcription: 

quavxumulco. puo

Gloss Normalization: 

Cuauhxomolco, pueblo

Gloss Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Source Manuscript: 
Date of Manuscript: 

c. 1541, but by 1553 at the latest

Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Mexico City

Semantic Categories: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

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

corners, turns, bent, esquinas, curvas, trees, árboles, Coaxomulco, Coaxomolco, Cuaxomulco, Cuaxomolco, Cuauhxomulco, Quaxomulco, Quavxumulco

Glyph or Iconographic Image: 
Karttunen’s Interpretation: 

"Snake Corner" [Frances Karttunen, unpublished manuscript, used here with her permission.]

Additional Scholars' Interpretations: 

"On the Corner of the Tree(s)" (Berdan and Anawalt, 1992, vol. 1, 203)

Glyph/Icon Name, Spanish Translation: 

"El Rincón del Bosque" o "El Rincón de la Víbora"

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 

Codex Mendoza, folio 41 recto,, image 92 of 188.

Image Source, Rights: 

The Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, hold the original manuscript, the MS. Arch. Selden. A. 1. This image is published here under the UK Creative Commons, “Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License” (CC-BY-NC-SA 3.0).