Itzcoatl (TR29r)

Itzcoatl (TR29r)
Compound Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This compound glyph for the personal name of Itzcoatl (or Itzcoatzin, in the reverential), shows the undulating body of a snake or serpent (coatl) in profile and facing toward the viewer's left, with a protruding, bifurcated tongue, an open eye, a terracota-colored body, a red underbelly, a golden or yellow rattle at the end of its tail, and black triangular shapes representing obsidian points (itztli) along its back. The name translates, literally, "Obsidian Blade Serpent."

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

The contextualizing image shows Itzcoatl sitting on the petlatl and icpalli, symbols of his authority. His cape has a white diamond with a red line and white fringe on his back, and the same colored and design of trim appears along the edge of the cape where it reaches his feet. His toes are bare, but his feet appear to be on sandals. An unusally twisted hand seems to emerge from underneath the cape.

Compare this glyph for Itzcoatl with others in this collection, drawn from a variety of manuscripts.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Date of Manuscript: 

ca. 1550–1563

Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Mexico City

Cultural Content, Credit: 

Jeff Haskett-Wood and Stephanie Wood

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

snakes, serpientes, obsidiana, obsidian

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

Serpiente de Obsidiana, o Navaja-Culebra

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 

Telleriano-Remensis Codex, folio 29 recto, MS Mexicain 385, Gallica digital collection,

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.”

Historical Contextualizing Image: