Tolocan (Mdz12r)

Tolocan (Mdz12r)
Compound Glyph

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This is a multicolored drawing of the compound glyph for the place name Tolocan. This compound glyph is glossed Tolocan. One of the principal features is a man's head atop the mountain or hill. The mountain (tepetl) is what Gordon Whittaker would call a semantic complement, and it serves as a silent locative. The head is bowed, which may indicate the verb toloa, to bow the head. The locative suffix -can is not shown visually. The other visible parts of this place name refer to the valley or realm around what is now the city of Toluca. These parts spell out the name for the region, Matlatzinco. They encompass the net (matlatl) and the visual for the diminutive -tzin, which is the male buttocks. The locative suffix -co at the end of Matlatzinco is not shown visually.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

Another matlatl much like this one appears on folio 60r of the Codex Mendoza, where a man uses it to catch a fish while standing in a canoe. A glyph for "matlatzinco" with a net much like this one appears in the Codex Azcatitlan at the national library in France. There was once a large lagoon in the Toluca valley, where fishing with nets such as this were apparently ubiquitous. Besides Toluca, Metepec was another prominent center for this region called Matlatzinco in the sixteenth century and on into the Spanish colonial period. Toluca became part of the Marquesado del Valle or tribute region assigned to Hernando Cortés, and Metepec was the center for the royal domain in the region.

Added Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Gloss Image: 
Gloss Diplomatic Transcription: 

tuluca-- puo

Gloss Normalization: 

Tolocan, pueblo

Gloss Analysis, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Source Manuscript: 
Date of Manuscript: 

c. 1541, or by 1553 at the latest

Creator's Location (and place coverage): 

Mexico City

Semantic Categories: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Reading Order (Compounds or Simplex + Notation): 
Other Cultural Influences: 

Matlatzinca, butts, buttocks, rear end, little, lower, hills, mountains, bottom, nalgas, trasero

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

Codex Mendoza, folio 12 recto,, image 34 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).