tlacoquixtia (TR9r)

tlacoquixtia (TR9r)

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This iconographic example shows a man (wearing the signature loincloth), possibly a priest, performing self-sacrifice through the drawing of blood by piercing his tongue. He is standing in profile, facing the viewer's left. Blood (eztli) drops down from his protruding tongue, which might involve the verb chochopica. He uses an implement for piercing his tongue that may be a piece of wood with a sharp point attached. He carries four more such implements in his left hand. He has long hair, tied in a tzontli with what is probably a red leather thong. He also wears what appears to be a bracelet with green stones and other items of preciosity. A similar red leather tie is called a "cinta de cuero rojo," employed in the process of tying up one's hair to be converted into a warrior, according to Guy Stresser-Péan (1995, 45). (See our Bibliography for the full citation to his study.) Others note that priests wore their hair this way.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

The activity, along with the particular hairstyle, may be indications that this man is a priest.

Gloss Image: 
Gloss Diplomatic Transcription: 

se sacrificabā

Gloss Normalization: 

se sacrificaban

Gloss Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Date of Manuscript: 

ca. 1550–1563

Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Mexico City

Cultural Content, Credit: 

Jeff Haskett-Wood


bloodletting, bleeding, blood, sangría, sangrado, sangre

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

tlacoquixtia,to pass small twigs through the tongue or the ears, to draw blood as an offering to honor the divine forces,
tlaco, half, middle, center,
quixtia, to take, to take out of,
chochopica, for blood to drip off of something or someone,
tzon(tli), hair,
temilo(tli), a warrior hairstyle,
tlatzonilpia, to tie up the hair,

Image Source: 

Telleriano-Remensis Codex, folio 9 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: