tecuhtli (Mdz5v)

tecuhtli (Mdz5v)
Element from a Compound

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This element standing for tecuhtli (high noble, lord) has been carved from the compound sign for the place name, Tecpan. It is a profile view (facing left) of a turquoise diadem or crown, the xiuhhuitzolli, with a point at the top and a red (probably leather) tie that goes around the back of the head.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

This turquoise diadem was actually called the xihuitzolli (spelled variously) or xiuhtzontli, but it was a symbol for the position of tecuhtli (also spelled teuctli), for it was worn by high nobles who were leaders and residents of a teccalli (lordly house). Thus, the diadem is an ideogram for tecuhtli, and does not provide a phonetic reading. The red tie, possibly made of dyed leather, has a knot that is shaped much like the one on the maxtlatl) (loincloth).

Added 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

Cultural Content, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood


crowns, diadems, diademas, señores, teuctli

Glyph or Iconographic Image: 
Relevant Nahuatl Dictionary Word(s): 
Additional Scholars' Interpretations: 


Glyph/Icon Name, Spanish Translation: 

el caballero, el principal

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Alonso de Molina

Image Source: 

Codex Mendoza, folio 05 verso, https://digital.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/objects/2fea788e-2aa2-4f08-b6d9-648c00..., image 21 of 188.

Image Source, Rights: 

The Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, hold the original manuscript, the MS. Arch. Selden. A. 1. This image is published here under the UK Creative Commons, “Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License” (CC-BY-NC-SA 3.0).