Tlachco Codex

This manuscript resides in the private collection of Sean Galvin in Ireland, who generously made digital photographs available for dissemination and study. This is a record of an investigation into Indigenous people's complaints about tribute demands in kind and in labor, including mine work in Taxco, Guerrero, Mexico, in the sixteenth century. Although written (or perhaps just glossed) in Spanish, the drawings were made by Indigenous painters. One section of text refers to eggs, fish, and melons that were provided as foodstuffs. Elsewhere, large numbers of hens (whether chickens or turkeys, it is not clear) had to be provided, along with bundles of tribute cloth, thin sheets, maize, and what appear to be rings (an early manifiestation of Taxco's silversmithing?) to the Spanish overlords and their wives. Both Indigenous men and women are indicated as laborers, including “Indian women who make bread (i.e. tortillas),” shown alongside a grinding stone for making the tortilla dough, and others who had to work as servants in the houses of Spaniards. Men are shown (in tears?) carrying the wives of Spanish colonial officials in hammocks attached to poles. (Stephanie Wood)

Principal editor: 
Stephanie Wood

Transcriptions and Translations

Analytic Transcription English Translation Literal Transcription Spanish Translation Standardized Transcription
¶ proceso hecho ante la justicia de las minas de tasco entre los yndios de acala (?) contra el gobernador del dho pueblo. Va remitido al Illrmo Sor. virrey (?) desta nueva españa. ce ...... y sellado. (by Stephanie Wood) A court case brought before the legal authorities of the mines of Taxco between the Indians of Acala (?) against the municipal governor of said town. It is remitted to the Illustrious Lord the Viceroy of this New Spain. It is .... and stamped. (by Stephanie Wood) abia los maceguales y este los pagar .................... They request that he..... .....of the commoners, and this.... pay...........
dos casas q. an hecho Two houses that they have built.
q.dase por poner en esta pintura los guevos y pescado y melones y otras cosas de menudencias q. por no saber ni nadie nos avisaban q. lo aviamos de pintar se a q.dado de las quales ..usas a recibido mū chas veses de nosotros el dho corregi[-] dor It remains to be put in this painting the eggs and fish and melons and other things from daily life that because of not knowing, nor did anyone advise us that we needed to paint it, it has remained among the said things ... the corregidor has received many times from us.
la muger del corregidor The wife of the Corregidor (Spanish colonial administrator.)
la muger del alguazil The wife of the alguacil (Spanish colonial administrator).
yndias q. azen pã Indigenous women who make bread (which can mean either wheat bread, consumed primarily by Spaniards, or tortillas).
yndios para servir en casa Indigenous men for serving in the household [of the Spaniards].
dos prinçipales apaleados Two indigenous elite men who were caned.
y estos maçehuales lo mismo And these commoners, the same.