Tlatol (MH533v)

Tlatol (MH533v)
Simplex Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This black-line drawing of the simplex glyph for the personal name Tlatol (or Tlahtol, with the glottal stop, “Word,” attested here as a man’s name) shows speech scrolls emerging from the mouth of the tribute payer. These are five simple lines with curls at the right ends. The top one, however, does not have a full curl.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

Speech scrolls that come out of a human mouth (also, for instance, from an eagle's beak) can represent a range of vocabulary, including: tlatolli (word), itoa (to speak), tzatzi (to announce), motenehua (aforementioned), nahuatl (language, or a pleasant sound), chalani (to speak a lot), and cuica (to sing). This list is not exhaustive.

It is interesting that "word" is represented as oral rather than alphabetic or hieroglyphic. Oral communication was paramount in Nahua culture.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Gloss Image: 
Gloss Diplomatic Transcription: 

framco tlatol

Gloss Normalization: 

Francisco Tlatol (or Tlahtol, if we include the glottal stop)

Gloss Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Date of Manuscript: 


Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Huejotzinco, Puebla

Semantic Categories: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood


words, palabras, speak, hablar, speech

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

La Palabra

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 

Matrícula de Huexotzinco, folio 533v, World Digital Library.

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: