oztotl (Mxnus29)

oztotl (Mxnus29)
Element from a Compound

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This multicolored painting of the element oztotl (cave) doubles as the simplex place glyph Chicomoztoc (see below). This glyph actually shows seven caves, and each one could be an element. They are contained within a half-circle shape, which may be a cave in itself. Each cave is separated by curling, rocky outcroppings, reminiscent of the ends of stones in tetl glyphs. Their framing is a turquoise-blue color. Red lines come out of each cave toward the top of the half-circle. This would be the migration path for each ethnic group associated with one of these caves, with an eventual destination of Mexico Tenochtitlan.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Source Manuscript: 
Date of Manuscript: 

ca. 1590

Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

central Mexico

Cultural Content & Iconography: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Jeff Haskett-Wood


caves, cuevas

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

https://www.loc.gov/resource/gdcwdl.wdl_15284/?sp=29&st=image. This image is hosted by the Library of Congress and the World Digital Library, but the manuscript is part of the holdings of Bibliothèque nationale de France and the original source is gallica.bnf.fr/BNF.

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 gallica.bnf.fr / Bibliothèque nationale de France” or “Source gallica.bnf.fr / BnF.”