tlatoa (Mdz6r)

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This element for tlatoa (or tlahtoa, with the glottal stop) (to speak) has been carved from the compound sign for the place name, Cuauhtlatoa. It is a horizontally presented, turquoise blue, speech scroll, rolling out to our left.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

This glyph for tlatoa (to speak) is not distinguishable from the speech scroll that is used to express the word nahuatl (language or an agreeable sound). See the various and much more common uses of the turquoise-colored speech scroll in the attestations of nahuatl, below right. Speech scrolls are also seen in association with the verb cuica (to sing), in a couple of these attestations below. The direction that they take as the roll out can be either right or left. The curl is usually underneath, but it can also be curling on the upper side. Finally, while the turquoise color is favored, we also see yellow and red/white in these other examples.

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

Semantic Categories: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

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

to speak (verb)

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 

Codex Mendoza, folio 6 recto,, image 22, 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).