huehuetl (MH508r)

huehuetl (MH508r)
Simplex Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This black-line drawing of a simplex glyph for the noun "drum" (huehuetl)] coincides with the glyph for the personal name Huehuetzintli, which has the added reverential (or possibly a diminutive) suffix. A hand above the drum suggests that someone is playing the drum. Fairly small, given the size of the hand above it, this upright, standing drum has intricately carved, cut-out legs with a step design. A horizontal line near the top of the drum may hint at the edge of the skin covering.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

This drum was one of the key percussive instruments in the Nahua repertoire for singing and dancing. It was also a personal name in various regions and was a name held by a famous person in early Tollan. See our Online Nahuatl Dictionary for examples of its use in early Nahuatl sources.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Date of Manuscript: 


Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Huejotzingo, Puebla, Mexico

Cultural Content & Iconography: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Jeff Haskett-Wood

Shapes and Perspectives: 

drums, tambores, música, instrumentos de percusión, vertical, huehuetes, atabal, atabales

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

El Tambor Vertical

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 

Matrícula de Huexotzinco, folio 508r, 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: