xo (Mdz55r)

Glyph or Iconographic Image Description: 

This element for xo (foot) has been carved from the compound sign for the place name, Xocoyocan. Here, "xo" consists of a black, left footprint headed in the direction of our right.

Description, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Added Analysis: 

The glyph has the phonetic reading of -xo-, which means "foot" in many compounds, such as: xo-pilli = toe, and xo-cpalli or ic-xo-polli, two words for the sole of the foot. Sometimes, however, -xo- can also mean green. It is important to recognize here, too, that footprints can have a phonetic value of "pan" (on) or the sounds "o" or "ot", when coming from otli, road or pathway, given that footprints on cartographic paintings typically refer to a road or path.

Footprint glyphs have a wide range of translations. In this collection, so far, we can attest to yauh, xo, pano, -pan, paina, temo, nemi, quetza, otli, iyaquic hualiloti, huallauh, tepal, tetepotztoca, totoco, otlatoca, -tihui, and the vowel "o." Other research (Herrera et al, 2005, 64) points to additional terms, including: choloa, tlaloa, totoyoa, eco, aci, quiza, maxalihui, centlacxitl, and xocpalli.

Added 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

Cultural Content & Iconography: 
Cultural Content, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Shapes and Perspectives: 

foot, feet, footprints, movement

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

xo-, an element with the sense of foot in compounds, https://nahuatl.wired-humanities.org/content/xo
xopil(li), the toes of the foot, https://nahuatl.wired-humanities.org/content/xopilli
icxopol(li), the sole of the foot, https://nahuatl.wired-humanities.org/content/icxopolli
xocpal(li), the sole of the foot, https://nahuatl.wired-humanities.org/content/xocpalli
-pan (locative suffix), https://nahuatl.wired-humanities.org/content/pan
pano, to cross or cross over, https://nahuatl.wired-humanities.org/content/pano

Glyph/Icon Name, Spanish Translation: 

el pie

Spanish Translation, Credit: 

Stephanie Wood

Image Source: 
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).