Aztec Society

The Old Man

The revered old man, the aged man (is) whitehaired, white-headed, hardened with age, aged, ancient, experienced, a successful worker.

The good man (is) famous, honored, an adviser, a reprehender, a castigator, a counselor, an indoctrinator. He tells, he relates ancient lore; he leads an exemplary life.

The bad old man (is) a fabricator, a liar, a drunkard, a thief; decrepit, feeble; a gaudy old man, a luxurious old man, an old fool, a liar, He invents falsehood.

The Old Woman

The revered old woman, the noble old woman (is) one who never abandons the house, who is covered with ashes, who guards ( the home).

The good old woman (is) a supervisor, a manager, a shelter.

The bad old woman (is) one who is forgotten. She deceives, she dishonors one.

The Noble Man of Middle Age

The middle-aged man (is) strong, powerful, energetic.

The good middle-aged man (is) a doer, a worker- agile, active, solicitous.

The bad noble man of middle-age (is) lazy, negligent, slothful, indolent, sluggish, idle, languid, a lump of flesh, a lump of flesh with two eyes, a thief. He absconds; he is a petty thief; he kills one by treachery; he steals from one.

The original text the General History of the things of New Spain can be found in the Medicea Laurenziana Library in Florence, Italy. This translation of the text is published by the School of American Research which is an organization that focuses on anthropology, as well as the University of Utah. Charles Dibble and Arthur Anderson were anthropologists who learned Nahuatl and translated the General History of the Things of New Spain. The entire book was translated so not every description will be accurate, also he changes that are made are made in quotations.

Anderson, Charles Dibble, and Arthur. 1982. Florentine Codex. Santa Fe: The School of American Research and the University of Utah.