Á H U A T L
A Brief History of the Nahua People.
The Nahua people held"the flower and song",
or art, in great esteem. They considered it the only road to a more
authentic form of knowledge, closer to reality, less subject to the relative,
illusory nature of the earthly world. This is clear in their extensive legacy
to universal art, poetry, architecture, murals, sculpture and textiles were
some of the many disciplines which the Nahuas developed.
In Náhuatl culture, being an artist was reserved for only a few particularly
gifted individuals and was directly linked with the realm of ritual and divinity,
central to Aztec society. For someone to become an artist, different considerations
were taken into account: first and foremost, he had to be destined to
it, and that was determined by the position of the stars at his birth; secondly,
he had to have "countenance and heart", which in the metaphoric
Nahuatl language means "having a strong personality, a meticulously
the Náhuatl cosmology, snakes were associated with earthly matters, the
night, all things femenine, pleasurable and sensual. The serpent was one
the most important sacred symbols, associated not only with darkness, but
also with precious things, such as in the case of Xiuhcóatl, or the
turquoise serpent used as a weapon by Huitzilopochtli (a link between the
blue of the heavens and the green of the earth), or the plumed serpent, Quetzalcóatl,
the sacred serpent which could fly, covered
with the plumes of the sacred bird, the quetzal.
tradition says that the world as we know it was created during the
transfiguration of Ometéotl, "the Absolute". This transfiguration is known as Tezcatlipoca, or "the smoky mirror",
from which the four directions of the universe emerged:
black, the North
white, the West
blue, the South
red, the East
Náhuatl - The Mexican language,
from the root 'Nahua' meaning
"a dance done with the hands
entwined, a concordance, to
move in cadence". Also
as the turquoise smoke...
harmonious speech, that which is pleasing to the ear.
- Vowels a -
ah, e - eh, i - ee, o - oh, u - oo.
Pronunciation - Consonants ch as in chain j like the h in hard x like the sh in she z like s qubefore e or i sounds like k c sounds like sbefore e or i, like k everywhere else. h sounds like a soft h, more a pause than a sound.
* duplicated consonants are pronounced twice. All
have emphasis in the
In general, nouns are identified by the suffixes t, tli, li, in ...after the "root word".
r i e f D i c t i o n a r y o f C o m m o n T
e r m s Nahuatl language varies according
to the state where you are, some words are spelled starting with a "K"
while another with a "C" for the same word, even the last letters
maybe altered depending on your location in Mexico. We try to use the most
common terms below.
Kalli - house, casa
Tlazocamatli - thank you, gracias
Tonatiuh - sun, sol
Meztli - moon, luna
Azteka - from Aztekatl (meaning from Aztlan), de Aztekatl
(significa de Aztlan)
Tlatoa - speak, hablar
Ikniuhtli - friend, amigo
Nehuatl - I, yo
Tehuatl - you, tu
Niltze - hi, hola
Amo - no
Kema - yes, si
Titlatoa Nahuatl? - do
you speak Nahuatl? Tu hablas Nahuatl?
Kema, Nitlatoa Nahuatl - yes, I speak Nahuatl, Si, Yo
Amo, Nitlato Nahuatl - no, I do not speak Nahuatl. No hablo Nahuatl
Ken Motoka? - what is your name?, Cual es tu numbre?
Nehuatl Notoka... - my name is..., mi nombre es ...
Kanin Tichanti? - where do you live?, donde es tu vives?
Nehuatl Nichanti... - I Live..., yo vivo...
Kenin Otimo Uika - how are you doing?, como as estado?
Hue Kaulli - very good, muy bien
Kualli - good, bueno
e m s & M i n e r a l s
Chalchiuitl - jade
Itztli - obsidian, obsidiana
Tecalli - onix
Iztactehulotl - rock quartz or crystal, cristal de roca
Huitzitzilteepatl - opal , opalo
Teoxihuitl - turquoise, turquesa
Apozonalli - amber, ambar
Tlaquauacteepatl - diamond, diamante
Tlapaltehuilotl - amathist, amatista
Quetzalxoquiyae - emerald, esmeralda
Cuacocoztic - ruby, rubí
Epyollotli - pearl, perla
Matlalxihuitl - saffire, zafiro
N u m b e r s Ce -
Ome - two, dos
Yeyi - three, tres
Nahui - four, cuatro
Macuil - five, cinco
Chicuacen - six, seis
Chicome - seven, siete
Chicuei - eight, ocho
Chihnahui - nine, nueve
Matlactli - ten, diez
o l o r s
Pisti - black, negro
Ichcati - white, blanco
Xoxocti - green, verde
Asolti - blue, azul
Chilti - red, rojo
Costi - yellow, amarillo
Axocoti - purple, morado