Nacochtlan (Mdz42r)

Nacochtlan (Mdz42r)
Simplex Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This simplex glyph for the place name Nacochtlan is an ear with a plug or flare (nacochtli) in the lobe. The plug/flare is shown in a profile view, with part showing in front of the ear and part behind it. The flared end is on the viewer's right. The plug/flare is painted turquoise blue, the color of the precious stone. The locative suffix (-tlan) is not shown visually in this glyph.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

The gloss supports the reading of the locative suffix of -tlan (Karttunen) and not -tla or -tlah (which would be the "many," i.e. abundance, that Berdan and Anawalt interpreted).
See Mexicolore for a study of ear plugs.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Gloss Image: 
Gloss Diplomatic Transcription: 


Gloss Normalization: 

Nacochtlan, 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: 
Shapes and Perspectives: 

ear plugs, earplugs, orejeras, jewelry, joyas

Glyph or Iconographic Image: 
Relevant Nahuatl Dictionary Word(s): 

nacoch(tli), ear plug or ear flare,
-tlan (locative suffix), place,

Karttunen’s Interpretation: 

"Earplug Place" [Frances Karttunen, unpublished manuscript, used here with her permission.]

Additional Scholars' Interpretations: 

"Place of Many Earplugs" (Berdan and Anawalt, 1992, vol. 1, p. 194)

Glyph/Icon Name, Spanish Translation: 

"El Lugar de la Orejera"

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood (borrowing from Alonso de Molina's translation of nacochtli)

Image Source: 

Codex Mendoza, folio 42 recto,, image 94 of 188.

Image Source, Rights: 

Original manuscript is held by the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, MS. Arch. Selden. A. 1; used here with the UK Creative Commons, “Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License” (CC-BY-NC-SA 3.0)