huauhtli (Verg10r)

huauhtli (Verg10r)
Element from a Compound

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This black-line drawing of the element huauhtli (amaranth) has been carved from the compound glyph for the personal name Xochicuauh. It shows a vertical plant with four densely flowering stalks. The flowers have an emblematic series of short horizontal lines, resulting in the look of a brush. This huauhtli plant was employed in the original compound to provide the phonetic value of -cuauh, the latter part of the name.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

Amaranth is a key item of the Nahua diet, still eaten in significant quantities today. It is a gluten-free and nutritious quasi-cereal and protein with various health benefits. Figures representing divine forces were shaped with amaranth mixed with honey. This food had such an important place in Nahua spiritual beliefs and activities that the colonizers were fearful it could impede the acceptance of Christianity, so they tried to outlaw its cultivation.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Source Manuscript: 
Date of Manuscript: 


Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Tepetlaoztoc, near Tetzcoco

Cultural Content, Credit: 

Jeff Haskett-Wood

Shapes and Perspectives: 

comida, plantas, flores, semillas

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

el amaranto

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 
Image Source, Rights: 

The non-commercial reuse of images from the Bibliothèque nationale de France is free as long as the user is in compliance with the legislation in force and provides the citation: “Source / Bibliothèque nationale de France” or “Source / BnF.” We would also appreciate a citation to the Visual Lexicon of Aztec Hieroglyphs,