Tecpin (MH576v)

Tecpin (MH576v)
Simplex Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This black-line drawing of the simplex glyph for the personal name Tecpin (“Flea,” attested here as a man’s name) shows a profile view of a full-bodied flea (tecpin). It has a vague head and curving body with two visible legs. The body and head are outlined in black and colored with red. The legs are just marked with red, no black.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

Diagrams of flea body parts vary. Some show three pairs of legs, some show fewer. Most diagrams show mouth parts that hang down or protrude, and given the usual Nahua attention to detail with insects, it is surprising that these protrusions and the claws on the legs are not showing here. This suggests some haste in drawing this glyph.

The term tecpin, ending in -in, is often written without an absolutive, perhaps because many animal names end in -in (e.g. michin, fish). And Michel Launey suggested the word for flea does not have an absolutive form. But John Sullivan and the IDIEZ group suggest tecpimitl as the full term. See our Online Nahuatl Dictionary.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Gloss Image: 
Gloss Diplomatic Transcription: 

peo. tecpin

Gloss Normalization: 

Pedro Tecpin

Gloss Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Date of Manuscript: 


Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Huejotzingo, Puebla, Mexico

Semantic Categories: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Jeff Haskett-Wood


insects, insectos, fleas, pulgas

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

La Pulga

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 
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: