Number 9

Editor’s note: This content is archival.

Nahua Newsletter

February 1990, Number 9

The Nahua Newsletter
With support from the Department of Anthropology
Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne
Alan R. Sandstrom, Editor
A Publication of the Indiana University
Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Brad R. Huber, Editor

Alan R. Sandstrom and Paul Jean Provost, Managing Editors


Nahua Society Steering Committee

Welcome to the ninth issue of the Nahua Newsletter. There are now over 280
subscribers. I thank everyone for making this the largest and most informative issue to
date. The assistance of Hannah James, Alan R. Sandstrom, Paul Jean Provost, the College
of Charleston, and Indiana-Purdue University are gratefully acknowledged. I am pleased
to report that a group of approximately 20 specialists met at the November 1989 meeting
of the American Anthropological Association in Washington DC to discuss the future of
Nahua scholarship. A general consensus was reached regarding the formation of a Nahua
Society Steering Committee to plan and coordinate symposia at future meetings of this
and other professional societies. It was suggested that the committee be composed of
3-6 individuals, that committee members serve two-year terms, and that members be
selected on alternate years. The editor is now accepting nominations (including
self-nominations) of individuals to the steering committee. Procedures for their
selection will be discussed at the 1990 AAA meeting at New Orleans.

1990 AAA Meeting

Paul Jean Provost (Indiana-Purdue University) is organizing a symposium for the
November 28- December 2, 1990 meeting of the American Anthropological Association in
New Orleans. Previous symposia for Nahua scholars were very well received. It is
expected that this symposium will draw participants from the U.S., Mexico, and Europe.
Two sessions, followed by a reception, are being planned. The symposium is tentatively
entitled “The Aztec Heritage: Perspectives on Self, Society, and Culture.” Paul Provost
hopes to attract specialists from a wide variety of disciplines: archaeology, art
history, physical anthropology, ethnohistory, linguistics, cultural anthropology, etc.
If you are interested in presenting a paper, you should send a: 1) “Proposal for Paper”
form, 2) “Advanced Registration” form, and 3) a check for the registration fee made out
to the American Anthropological Association to:

Paul Jean Provost
Department of Anthropology
Indiana-Purdue University
2101 Coliseum Blvd. East
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46805

The above forms appear in the January 1990 “Anthropology Newsletter,” or can be
obtained by writing to Paul Provost. The registration fee is $60.00 for members. These
items must reach Paul no later than March 21st.

Call for papers

1. Karen Dakin (UNAM) notes that “Tlalocan (Vol. XI) should be out in January 1990.
We are preparing Vol. XII and are interested in texts and documents for XII and future

2. Yolanda Lastra (UNAM) informs us that:

“The next UTO-AZTECAN working conference will be held in Mexico City at the
Instituto de Investigaciones Antropologicas, UNAM June 28-29, 1990. The meetings will
be on Thursday and Friday, June 28-29. Titles and abstracts of papers should be sent to
Yolanda Lastra before April 15 at: Instituto de Investigaciones Antropologicas, UNAM,
CU, Mexico D.F. 04510.

“Since it was agreed that everyone should stay at the same hotel, you are requested
to stay at the Hotel Majestic, a Best Western, right on the Zóocalo. This is a
large hotel that can offer us enough rooms for everyone. It will offer a discount to
those attending the meetings, so be sure you mention the name of the conference. The
discount prices are as follows: Single room: $32.00; Double room: $35.00; Triple room:
$38.00. Please write to make your reservation yourself. If you want to share a room,
you have to arrange this among yourselves.

“The hotel requires a 50% deposit of the total amount, which will be due 15 days
before arrival. Since mail is very slow, you should allow another two weeks for your
letter to be received. Your letter should be sent May 25th in order to be on the safe
side. If you cancel a reservation 10 days before arrival, you get your money back; if
not, you get charged “no show” for one night. When you write, please mention that you
are with the group meeting at Antropologicas, and you want to stay at the Majestic.
Give date and approximate time of arrival and departure.

The address to write to is: Oficina de Reservaciones, Hostales de Mexico, Av. Madero
30, 06600 Mexico D.F. (Telephone: 521-86-00: Telex: 01772770 RITZME; FAX5183466).

The program will be as follows:

  • Wednesday June 27th in the evening: Cocktails at the Majestic.
  • Thursday June 28th and Friday June 29th: 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. and 4:00-6:00 p.m.
    Meetings at Antropologicas (We intend to offer you transportation from the
  • Friday evening: Dinner (Time and place to be announced.)
  • Saturday June 30th: Tour of Teotihuacan pyramids guided by an archeologist with
    visits to places not usually not seen by tourists.”

3. Robert D. Shadow (Universidad de las Américas, Puebla) notifies us of the
following meetings:

held at the Escuela Nacional de Antropologia e Historia in Mexico City. Themes of the
conference include: Catholicism and Protestantism, Systems of Representation, Religious
Movements, Ethnicity, and Systems of Traditional Knowledge. Scholars interested in
attending or in presenting papers are invited to contact immediately: Elio Masferrer
Kan, A.P. 21-456, Coyoacan, 04000, Mexico, D.F.; Tel: 655-7018, 655-7271, or 655-7450,
Ext. 153. Those interested in receiving the newsletter RELIGION y SOCIEDAD (R Y S):
the same address.

Robert D. Shadow and Carlos Garma Navarro (Universidad Autónoma
Metropolitana-Iztapalapa) are organizing a round table discussion on the theme of
pilgrimage behavior in Mexico. Tentatively, the two or three day event is scheduled for
mid-May, 1990, and will be held on the campus of the Universidad de las
Américas-Puebla, in Cholula, Puebla. Since pilgrimage behavior is one of the
least discussed expressions of popular religion in the anthropological literature of
Mesoamerica, one of the goals of this meeting will be to identify the diverse forms,
meanings, shrines and social groups that constitute the pilgrimage phenomena in the
region. We suspect that many anthropologists, historians, geographers, and other social
scientists have information on pilgrimages but that little of this material has been
published. The meeting, therefore, is conceived as an initial step in providing an
empirical base for subsequent theoretical analysis. We are particularly interested in
reports from researchers who have accompanied pilgrim groups in their journey to sacred
shrines or sanctuaries, whether these be oriented toward Catholic or non-Catholic
supernatural beings. Scholars interested in participating in this event with either
empirical or theoretical papers are urged to write, or better yet phone: Robert D.
Shadow, Departamento de Antropologia, Universidad de las Américas-Puebla, A.P.
100, Santa Catarina Mártir, 72820 Puebla, Mexico; Tel: (22) 47-00-00 Ext. 194. A
copy of the article Símbolos que amarran, símbolos de dividen: Hegemonia
e impugnacion en una peregrinacion campesina a Chalma, by R. Shadow and Maria Rodriguez
Valdex is also available upon request.

Second Call: The Departamento de Antropologia of the Universidad de las
Américas-Puebla will be organizing a three-day to week-long series of
conferences entitled `II Simposio de Cholula,’ to be held in June, 1990, on the campus
of the Universidad de las Américas-Puebla, in Cholula, Puebla. The focus is on
the archaeology, ethnohistory, ethnography, and linguistics of the region of Cholula,
and surrounding areas including Tlaxcala, the Sierra Norte, Morelos, and Oaxaca.
Interested scholars should write or phone: Robert D. Shadow or Gabriela Urunuela,
Departamento de Antropologia, Universidad de las Américas-Puebla, A.P. 100,
Santa Catarina Mártir, 72820 Puebla, Mexico; Tel: (22) 47-00-00 Ext. 194.”


1. John K. Chance (Arizona State University) has a new book: Conquest of the Sierra:
Spaniards and Indians in Colonial Oaxaca. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. 1989.
2. Karen Dakin (UNAM) provided the following list of books that are available from
UNAM. Books published by Filologicas and/or Historicas can be ordered by mail from:
Instituto de Investigaciones Filologicas, Ciudad de Humanidades, UNAM, 04510 MEXICO
D.F. Books published by Antropologicas can be ordered from the Instituto de
Investigaciones Antropologicas at UNAM.



Pennington, Campbell W., ed. Arte y vocabulario de la lengua dohema, heve o eudeva.
Anonimo (Siglo XVII). (Seminario de Lenguas Indigenas, Instituto de Investigaciones
Filologicas). 1981.


Lionnet, Andres. El eudeve, un idioma extincto de Sonora. (Instituto de
Investigaciones Antropologicas). 1986.



Arenas, Pedro de. Manual de la lengua mexicana. ed. by Ascension H. de
Leon-Portilla. (Institutos de Investigaciones Historicas e Investigaciones
Filologicas). 1982.

Carochi, Horacio. Arte de la lengua mexicana y los adverbios della. 1645. ed. by
Miguel Leon-Portilla. (Institutos de Investigaciones Historicas e Investigaciones
Filologicas). 1981.

Dakin, Karen. Evolucion fonologica del nahuatl. (Seminario de Lenguas Indigenas,
Instituto de Investigaciones Filologicas). 1982.

Gonzalez Casanova, Pablo. Filologia nahuatl. ed. by Ascension H. de Leon- Portilla.
(Institutos de Investigaciones Historicas e Investigaciones Filologicas). 1978.

Leon-Portilla, Ascencion H. de. Tepuztlahcuilolli. (Instituto de Investigaciones
Historicas). 1988.

Molina, Alonso de. Confessionario mayor en la lengua mexicana y castellana (1569).
Introduccion por Roberto Moreno. (Institutos de Investigaciones Historicas e
Investigaciones Filologicas). 1984.

Olmos, Andres de. Vocabulario y arte de la lengua nahuatl. ed. by Thelma Sullivan
and R. Acuna. (Institutos de Investigaciones Historicas e Investigaciones Filologicas).
Sullivan, Thelma D. Compendio de la qramatica nahuatl. (lst edition, Instituto de
Investigaciones Historicas). 1976. Reimpresion 1989.


Lastra, Yolanda. Areas dialectales del nahuatl modern. (Instituto de Investigaciones
Antropologicas). 1986.

Launey, Michel. Introduccion a la lengua nahuatl: Gramatica y Literatura. (Instituto
de Investigaciones Antropologicas).

Other (Through Historicas):

Huehuetlahtolli: Testimonios de la antiqua palabra. Reproduccion facsimilar. Estudio
introductorio: Miguel Leon-Portilla; Version de los textos nahuas: Librado Silva
Galeana. Comision Nacional Conmemorativa del V Centenario del Encuentro de Dos Mundos.
Mexico, 1988.

Sahagún, Bernardino de et al. Coloquios y doctrina cristiana. (1524). Edicion
facsimilar, introduccion, paleografia, version del nahuatl y notas de Miguel
Leon-Portilla. UNAM, Fundacion de Investigaciones Sociales A.C. 1986.



Lionnet, Andres. Los elementos de la lenqua tarahumara. (Instituto de
Investigaciones Antropologicas). 1972.

Yaqui-mayo (Cahita).


Lionnet, Andres. Los elementos de la lengua cahita. (Instituto de Investigaciones
Antropologicas). 1977.



Suarez, Jorge A. La lenqua tlapaneca de malinaltepec. (Seminario de Lenguas
Indigenas, Instituto de Investigaciones Filologicas). 1983.



Levy, Paulette. Fonologia del totonaco de Papantla. Veracruz. (Seminario de Lenguas
Indigenas, Instituto de Investigaciones Filologicas). 1986.



Lionnet, Andres. El idioma tubar y los tubares, segun documentos ineditos de C. S.
Lumholz y

C. V. Hartman. Mexico, D.F.: Universidad Iberoamericana. 1978. 1. Jacqueline de
Durand-Forest (C.N.R.S.) is giving lectures on Nahuatl at the University of Paris
8-Saint Denis. Also, the papers presented at a symposium entitled “History and
Symbolism in Plastic and Pictorial Representations” at the 46th ICA in Amsterdam are
being published by B.A.R., Oxford, England. 4. Jorge Klor de Alva (Princeton) has
recently published:

“European Spirit and Mesoamerican Matter: Sahagun and the Crisis of Representation
in Sixteenth-Century Ethnography,” David Carrasco, ed., The Imagination of Matter:
Religion and Ecology in Mesoamerican Traditions (London: B.A.R. International Series
515, 1989). “Language, Politics, and Translation: Colonial Discourse and Classical
Nahuatl in New Spain,” Rosanna Warren, ed., The Art of Translation: Voices from the
Field. (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1989). “Contar Vidas: La autobiografia
confesional y la reconstruccion del ser nahua,” Arbor, 515-16 (1988): 49-78. (Consejo
Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, Madrid). “Aztlan, Borinquen, and Hispanic
Nationalism in the U.S.,” Rudolfo Anaya and Francisco Lomeli, eds., Aztlan: Essays on
the Chicano Homeland (Albuquerque: El Norte Publications/UNM Press, 1989). 5. Maria
Rodriguez Shadow (Departamento de Etnologia y Antropologia Social, Instituto Nacional
de Antropologia e Historia) notes the recent publication of two books of interest to
Nahua scholars: La mujer azteca and El estado azteca. Copies of both works are
available at $15.00 (U.S.) each from: Maria Rodriguez Shadow, Departmento de
Antropologia, Universidad de las Américas-Puebla, A.P. 100, Santa Catarina
Mártir, 72820 Puebla, Mexico. PLEASE SEND CHECK OR MONEY ORDER ONLY.

Items of interest

1. Leonardo Lopez Lujan (Museo del Templo Mayor) states that “En enero de 1990
inician por primera occasion los cursos de la Maestria en Arqueologia Mexica, en la
Escuela Nacional de Antropologia e Historia/INAH. Esta maestria tiene una duracion de 2
anos. Es coordinada por Eduardo Matos Moctezuma.”

2. Federico Nagel sent in two notes that are of interest to newsletter subscribers.
The first concerns a book; the second describes the work of the Seminario de Cultura
Nahuatl: a) Ascencion Hernandez de Leon-Portilla, Tepuztlahcuilolli, impresos en
nahuatl, Mexico, UNAM, 1988. (Instituto de Investigaciones Filologicas and Instituto de
Investigaciones Historicas), v.1 xxii + 282 p., 40 b&w pl., Index and bibliography;
v.2, 444p., Index. “Books about books have always been important for any scholar as an
aid for his or her research.

This one has several additional features. In volume 2 of Tepuztlahcuilolli Printed
Matter in Nahuatlone finds an ample bibliography of 2961 entries from the time of the
Spanish conquest through 1980. But the important point is that most of the entries have
a comment that can run from a line to almost two pages. These comments are useful to
get a better idea of the material in the publication which may not be clear from the
title alone. “That volume alone is an important source book for most scholars of
Nahuatl, but Ascencion complements it with a study of the history, philology, and
linguistics of the same material. I won’t try to give a complete picture of the content
of the first volume in this short note but one finds four ample chapters set in
chronological order: sixteenth century, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries,
nineteenth century, and twentieth century.

Among the many subtitles are: ‘The Franciscans, the Imperial School of Santa Cruz,
and the Participation of the Nahuatl man’, ‘Two Peculiar Philologists of the End of the
Nineteenth Century’ (Agustin Hunt Cortes and Agustin de la Rosa), and ‘Modern Nahuatl
Literature.’ These titles give some idea of the ample coverage of this volume. “As a
closing remark, I found the book very easy and entertaining reading in spite of the
enormous amount of information and the arid subject matter, a tribute to Ascencion’s
style.” b) “The Seminario de Cultura Nahuatl has continued to be active in spite of the
absence of Miguel Leon-Portilla, Mexico’s ambassador to UNESCO. It is now undertaking a
new project. Through the UNAM and UNESCO, a few of us are working in the AGN (Archivo
General de la Nacion) trying to locate more documents in Indian languages especially
Nahuatl. “There was a previous study by Cayetano Reyes G., et. al., of indigenous
language documents of the AGN. Two volumes have been published and a third is ready for
publication, Documentos mexicanos, cacchiaueles, mayas, matlatzincas, mixtecos, y
nahuas, Mexico, AGN, v.1 and v.2, 1982 (Serie: Guias y Catalogos No.72). Below are the
number of entries in each branch.













Bienes Nacionales








Clero Regular y Secular










Hospital de Jesus
























We started working with the branch of INDIOS and will probably continue with TIERRAS
which was left incomplete in Cayetano’s volumes; he reported Nahua documents only up to
volume 55. We will also include pictographic material that has prehispanic traits which
can be consulted in the 14 volumes of Catalogo de Ilustraciones. Mexico, AGN,

There is some similarity between our work and that of the Cayetano’s team, but we
are reporting more information on each document and its context. The three of us who
are working on the project are: Pilar Maynez, linguist; Librado Silva, Nahuat speaker;
and Federico Nagel, historian.”

3. Xavier Noguez (El Colegio de Mexico) advises us that “En el mes de noviembre de
1989 un grupo de investigadores y estudiantes de diversas instituciones se reunieron en
el Museo del Templo Mayor de la Ciudad de Mexico, con el objeto de crear el TALLER DEL
TEMPLO MAYOR. El objectivo principal de este taller es el estudio, discusion, y
publicacion de trabajos relacionados con la cultura nahuatl prehispanica y colonial
temprana. Para 1990 se tienen tambien planeadas conferencias, a nivel de especialistas
y publico en general, sobre diversos temas de arqueologia y etnohistoria. Los
principales patrocinadores de estas actividades son los doctores Eduardo Matos
Moctezuma, Alfredo Lopez Austin, Teresa Rojas Rabiela, y Johanna Broda. Mayores
informes con el doctor Eduardo Matos Moctezuma, Museo del Templo Mayor, Calle De
Guatemala, Colonia Centro 06060 MEXICO D.F. 4. Jane Rosenthal is “still collecting
words for ‘dog’ in American Indian languages, but I am now also interested in words for
‘cat,’ especially those which seem to be formed on the misto/michi prototype.

Calls for assistance

1. Susan Schroeder (Loyola University) indicates that she is “interested in
research, essays, or articles relating to Nahua women of the colonial period. If you
know of such materials, please contact Robert Haskett or Stephanie Wood, Department of
History, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403 or Susan Schroeder, History, Loyola
University, 820 N. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611.”

2. John F. Schwaller (Florida Atlantic University) recently received a grant from
the National Endowment for the Humanities to compile a catalogue of Nahuatl manuscripts
in US repositories. He has completed the: Newberry Library, Tulane U., Bancroft Lib.,
Lilly Lib., John Carter Brown Lib., Lib. of Congress, New York Public, U.T. and
Hispanic Society. He is scheduled to study: UCLA, Huntington Lib., Gilcrease Institute,
SMU-DeGolyer, UT-San Antonio, and the Univ. of Michigan. He would appreciate any
information on manuscripts held at repositories other than those listed above.

Directory updates

Editor’s note: For privacy reasons, Directory mailing lists are only provided on the print version. If you have any questions, please contact the editor.

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