Cuernavaca, 1559: Testament of don Toribio Cortés

The Testament of don Toribio Cortés, Cuernavaca, c. 1559.
Transcription, translation, and analysis by Robert Haskett.

The will of don Toribio Cortés comes down to us thanks to an early eighteenth-century property dispute pitting the holder of the sugar ingenio of Santa Ana Amanalco versus the indigenous town leaders of Cuernavaca. The urgency of the situation prompted Cuernavaca’s early eighteenth-century Nahua town leaders to present the Nahuatl text and a late-seventeenth-century Spanish translation of the testament to the adjudicating authorities as evidence of legitimate corporate landholding. At first glance, the format and language of this sixteenth-century testament seems standard for the era. Typically, don Toribio’s will begins with an invocation of the Trinity, and a statement that while his body is sick, suffering from “my cocoliztli,” his spirit was “happy,” or in other words healthy. Don Toribio placed his soul in God’s hands, his body in the earth from which it came. The testator invokes his witnesses, naming ten men, some identified as “noble elders.” Several of the witnesses have “surnames” that translate as “person of [a specific district of the altepetl]:” Felipe Ollacatl, Francisco Tlapaltecatl, and Miguel Analcatl.[1] Only one witness has the title “don” (don Miguel García), and he is joined by Toribio Sánchez as the only two witnesses with fully Spanish names; this kind of naming pattern is entirely consistent with usages in mid-sixteenth-century Cuernavaca.

Our testator asks to be buried in the “newly built” church, undoubtedly the Franciscan monastery church that still dominates the center of town. This would be a proper and desired burial location for a lord of don Toribio’s presumed stature, as would his burial in a “habit” (ixiptla habito) undoubtedly a Franciscan one.[2] A bit of pomp and circumstance would have been added to his funeral by the activities of singers (glossed in parallel by the Nahuatl cuicanime and its Spanish equivalent cantores) performing four responso (sic; prayers for the dead, part of the divine office for the dead) on the road as his body is brought to the church.[3] Don Toribio asks that two pesos be given to the local hospital, to be used to provide lit candles along the road where his funeral procession passes (it is not clear whether these candles were to be set along the road, or carried by those in the procession).[4] In the will’s sixth paragraph the testator asks that ten Masses be celebrated for him, ordering that a large amount of money—25 pesos—be offered to pay for them. All of this indicates that the lordly don Toribio wanted to have a send-off worthy of a wealthy, high status individual.

Don Toribio’s principal heir is his adult granddaughter, doña Luisa Cortés. Instead of leaving her his house, described as a tecpancalli (palace), he instructs his witnesses—who seem to have acted as albaceas, too--to sell off the stone but not the land, and to distribute the resulting 100 pesos from the sale as follows: forty pesos to his granddaughter, forty pesos to the church to fund three more Masses, and twenty pesos to be divided among the 10 witnesses. Doña Luisa is to get the houselot, as well; the borders of this plot are described in the testament, typically marked with features such as tree stumps and the edge of a road. Doña Luisa is also to receive two plots of pillalli (noble land) described as tlalhuactli (non-irrigated land) bordered by other fields, named places, churches or chapels (teopancalli; teopan) and natural features (for instance, “Ahuehuetitlan,” which could be a placename, or could mean “by the cypresses”). Of note in relation to these fields is the reference to the former presence of mayeque (dependent workers) who used to take care of them. They have gone away—a hint at the disruptive effects of the onset of the colonial regime, perhaps, or maybe due to epidemic disease—but would have to resume their work on the fields for the granddaughter if they should ever return, suggesting that don Toribio lived in what was undoubtedly the forlorn hope that “his” dependents still had an unaltered obligation to serve him and his family, even if these people were not technically slaves in the classic sense. Thus the family seems to have experienced at least some decline in their former power and influence, at least in comparison to what it must have been in pre-contact times. They were obviously still land rich, and if the bequests to the church are any indication, had some amount of liquid wealth.

A kind of secondary heir is a nephew named don Francisco Quauhpachiuhqui, who is to receive three irrigated fields and three non-irrigated plots. The heir don Francisco is also connected to a touchy situation connected with another irrigated field he was to inherit at, or called, Tzaqualpanapan, where he is to take over control of the mayeque who apparently still lived on and worked this land. However, at the time the testament was drawn up, these mayeque were working for a woman described as a “daughter-in-law” named doña Juana. Our testator apparently told his notary that this doña Juana’s father (yet another don Toribio) did not love his daughter and was trying to wrest control of the mayeque from her; unnamed “nephews” allegedly disliked doña Juana, too. These familial relations are not described more explicitly, and so are now somewhat confusing. If doña Juana was actually don Francisco’s wife, our testator don Toribio may be transferring the mayeque to the husband’s control to protect them from the machinations of the other don Toribio and his relatives.[5]

Another heiress is don Toribio’s niece, Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahuatl, daughter of his deceased younger brother, don Melchor de los Angeles. Our testator bequeathed her two plots of tlalhuactli (non-irrigated land) and a calmilli house lot; in the midst of boundary descriptions don Toribio recalled a successfully concluded dispute between him and the “governor Cortés.” Whether or not this is Hernando Cortés the conqueror, or an indigenous governor with the Cortés surname, is not made clear: the first post-conquest indigenous governor of Cuernavaca was a tlatoani with the baptismal name don Hernando Cortés, yet it is also known that the first Marqués del Valle engaged in a number of lawsuits with local indigenous nobles over land tenure issues, as did the second Marqués.[6] Don Toribio singles out two men or boys—Gaspar and Baltasar—barring them from inheritance and claiming that they were “dissolute youths.” The testator also makes a rather puzzling declaration that he is leaving so much property to his nieces and nephews because God did not give him any children. Of course, one of his heirs is called a granddaughter, so that he would have had children, so this statement probably has the sense of “I have no living children.” There is a strong indication that his second wife and her children were not going to receive equal treatment in comparison to his granddaughter, nieces, and nephew. For instance, don Toribio left his current wife, doña Magdalena Cortés, 20 pesos, a couple of kettles, a bed, four metates, and a portion of stored maize kernals, or in other words some domestic items that, for some reason, were his property rather than hers. While the testator also remembered his two stepdaughters, girls from doña Magdalena’s presumed first marriage, they did not get much except for a few more kitchen items. Moreover, the two girls were described almost as if they were servants. This rather shabby treatment of his second family may have been based on the existence of martial discord. Don Toribio stated that had his wife stayed in Cuernavaca, he would have provided a house for her. Instead, she seems to have gone off to her original home in neighboring Tlaquiltenango, a move that prompted him to order his witnesses to sell the Cuernavaca house (possibly a different structure from the tecpancalli that was to be dismantled); this marriage may have been a failed attempt to forge some kind of political alliance based on pre-contact models. The main body of the testatment ends with the standard disclaimers about the document being an authentic record of the testator’s wishes, as guaranteed by the presence and signatures of the witnesses; actually, none of the witnesses were able to write, so the notary provided their “signatures” himself. The codicil that follows the main body of the will concerns lands that allegedly became property of the altepetl itself.

The name of our testator, don Toribio Cortés, is the same as that of a more famous narrator-hero inscribed in Cuernavaca’s primordial titles, a legendary figure who was quite possibly himself a fusion of several ruling class men who lived in Cuernavaca during the post-conquest sixteenth century.[7] Further, the will’s codicil is very primordial title-like. It bears the same date as the main body of the will, and is signed by the same notary. But though it contains descriptions of lands that seem to have been left to the altepetl by don Toribio, upon closer inspection there is no will-like language specifically stating that the testator is bequeathing some of his properties to Cuernavaca as altepetlalli (land of the altepetl). Thus it appears that the codicil was added to a later-colonial copy of an older testament. For instance, the Spanish translation of the testament, written on paper stamped "1696/1697," does not include the text of the codicil. Moreover, while the codicil witness list is nearly the same as that found attached to the main body of the will, not only is don Toribio Cortés added as a testigo, but the Torbio Sánchez of the main body of the document becomes “don” Toribio in the codicil (look for other subtle differences, too, as you read the testament). As in Cuernavaca’s primordial titles, whoever wrote the codicil was quite concerned that non-Indians might try to appropriate the land being described in it: Spaniards, Spanish priests, mestizos, and mulattoes. This part of the manuscript enshrines the typically dualistic attitude towards Spaniards found in titles: the good king (often Carlos V) and/or conqueror Cortés, conveniently far removed in time and space, versus potentially troublesome Spaniards and other non-Nahuas living among them in their present. The codicil even includes the placename “Quauhtamala” in its boundary description, a location somewhere in the Cuernavaca area (rather than the better-known Kingdom of Guatemala) that was associated with the narrator-hero don Toribio in some of the primordial titles.[8]

Orthographically, the hand found in the text is not of sixteenth-century origin. There are far fewer abbreviations in the codicil, and no use of auh to introduce new phrases or sections; instead, ca is used for this purpose. The codicil has almost as many loanwords in its single folio as there are in the much longer “original” section. While some of these loans are shared between the two sections, the majority are only found in the codicil: officer titles and other words having to do with local and colonial government of the type that were ubiquitous in of various kinds of municipal documentation as well as in Cuernavaca’s primordial titles. In the context of the present manuscript, in other words, they are exceptional and “unwill-like.” In all sections of don Toribio’s testament, “s” is commonly used in place of “ç” and “z,” as is the frequent insertion of capital letters, often where they do not actually seem to belong. The existing manuscript is pretty clearly from Stage 3 and, given the absence of a Spanish translation of the codicil, likely from the time of the Amanalco sugar estate dispute. This expanded copy of a 1559 manuscript—the will of a lord named don Toribio Cortés, a mid-sixteenth-century noble Nahua who shared the surname with the best known primordial title founder/narrator—was finished off with a primordial title-like codicil that was added much, much later. This means that don Toribio’s testament is really a “will-title,” a conscious repurposing of a modified sixteenth-century original. The new version of the testament provides a will for the altepetl’s storied narrator hero of such important primordial titles as the Codice Municipal de Cuernavaca, and gives his blessing to corporate landholding. The juxtaposition of the codicil with the testament implies by association, rather than through explicit testamentary language, that don Toribio presided over the creation of the altepetlalli glossed in the added folio’s boundary description. The recreation of this manuscript came at a time when Cuernavaca’s indigenous leaders were trying to expand their arsenal of written evidence for their immemorial and legitimate possession of properties threatened by an expanding Spanish-owned sugar estate.


1.) Ollac, Tlapallan, and Analco were three of Cuernavaca’s main wards; -catl means “person of” a specific place.

2.) It is interesting that whereas the building is referred to by the loanword “yglesia,” the offering for the burial is to be given to the teopan (“church,” “temple”). Perhaps the locative “-pan” is essential here, reinforcing the entry of the money for the burial into the “church” in the generic sense of the church as an organization, while “yglesia” is specifically about the new, obviously Spanish-style building (even if the labor was undoubtedly provided by the indigenous people of Cuernavaca). The paring of “ixipla[tl]” and “habito” here is interesting: either the Spanish is seen as the equivalent of the Nahuatl, or this is a specific kind of “habito,” not one actually worn by a friar, but a “substitute” made specifically for use in burials. This would be especially true if, as seems possible, “ixipla” is meant to be run together with “habito” to form a compound noun “ixiptlahabito.” Unfortunately, the typically spare and workmanlike colonial-era Spanish translation of the will does not clear up this issue, ignoring the ixiptla altogether and referring only to an habito (William L. Clements Library Cuernavaca Papers, fol. 92r).

3.) At least one of these may have been the ancient and traditional "Libera me, Domine, de viis inferni qui portas æreas confregisti et visitasti inferum et dedisti eis lumen . . . qui erant in poenis . . . advenisti redemptor noster" etc. This is one of the few texts in the Roman Liturgy alluding to Christ's descent into hell,”according to the Catholic Encyclopedia (New Advent,

4.) It is also possible, of course, that there is no connection between the offering to the hospital and the candles, which were simply two things lumped together in this section either by the whim of the notary, or because the testator mentioned them in more or less the same breath.
5.) It is just possible to interpret the Nahuatl as saying that doña Juana doesn’t love her father or the nephews, so that the testator don Toribio may be punishing her by taking the mayeque away from her.

6.) Haskett, Visions of Paradise, 205-206.

7.) The testator don Toribio is not likely to have been the famous governor of the same name, who was sill alive a couple of decades after the present will was written, though it is remotely possible that the gobernador’s testatment had been drawn up at a time when he had been ill but then survived.

8.) See Haskett, Visions of Paradise, 133.

Principal editor: 
Robert Haskett

Transcriptions and Translations

Analytic Transcription English Translation Spanish Translation
ma moyectenahua yn itocCatzin yn dius tetatzin y dius tepiltzin dius eSpirito santo niqutohua y nehuatl don toribio Cortez niCan noChan ollac tepetenchi Ca ye ninomiquilisnequi heneh [?] hualmonochilisnequi yn noteouh y notlatoCauh auh maçihui y ÇenCa moÇotlahua y nonaCayo auh y noCoColis y notlalnaCayo miquilis Ca amo quē Ca Ca pactiCa auh y aCachtopa ymactizinCo noConCahua y noanima y noteouh y notlatoCauh Ca itlachihualtzin auh y nonaCayo ytech niCahua yn tlali Ca ytech oquis Ca çan tlali Ca Çan Çoquitl y nehuatl don toribio Cortes niCan nictlalia y notestamento Ca noÇenyoloCaCopa yn aiac nechcuitlahuiltia yn imixpã y notestigohuan y nahuintin pipiltin yn ollac huehuetque chiquaÇen tlacatl Juao tlapaltecatl ollac franco tlapalteCatl tlapallan don migel gara: analco thoribioSanchez calnahuac felipe ollaCatl ollac migl analCatl analCo franco thocalpaneCatl yxtlahuaCã: pedro chiapaneCatl huaxtla franco huitznahuatl thotlan o yehuantinin y noteStigohuã yn imixpan y motlalia y noteStamento yn izquitlamãtli y notlanequilis yn itech monequiS y nanima ------------------------------------- V yniC Çentlamãtli niquitohua y nehuatl don toribio Cortez yntla ninomiquiliis honCan ninotlaytlania y iacuic mochihua yglesia onCã motoCaS y nonaCayo auh ynic motoCas y nonaCayo Calaquis yn huentzintli yn teopã ome ps.o ypan nahui tomin == V auh ynic ontlamantli niquitohua y notlanequiliS Çentetl haBito niquitlatiuh yc quimiliuhtiaS y nonaCayo auh calaquiS yn huentzintli y teopã macuili pe.s yn ixiptla haBito Ca noyolcacopa y niquitlantiuh haBito == V auh ynic yetlamãtli niquitohua y notlanequiliS yn CuiCanime yn Cantores niquinmaCatiuh ome ps ynic Canaquihui y nonaCayo auh niquitlantiuh nauhtetl respoSo yn õpan quiteCaSque yn otliCa auh yehuantin quimati yn topilhuantzitzihuã y çaÇo quesquitetl nechmotlayoColilisque respoSo == V auh ynic nahui Capitolo niquitohua y notlanequilis oSpital nicCachiuhtiuh ome pss yc quiSaz yn CandellaS onCan tlatlatias yn otlica yn iquac Canaquihui nonaCayo == V auh ynic Cuiltlamãtli [sic] niquitohua y nehuatl don torbio Cortez y notlanequilis niquintlantiuh matlactli miSSa y nopa mitos Calaquis yn huentzintli Çenpohuali o maCuili ps yn teopã auh yn iquaC yn oninomiquili Çan nimã moCahualiuh yn çenpohuali o macuili pss yn teopan yehuãtin quiCahualihi [sic] in imixpan onictlalia y notestamento y notestigohuã== May the name of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit be praised. I, Don Toribio Cortés, am here in my home of Ollac Tepetenchi. I already am about to die [heneh] my God and my ruler wants to come and summon me. Even though my flesh is very weak [and] from my sickness my earthly body will die, nothing is wrong with [my soul]; it is healthy. First, I am leaving my soul in my ruler God's hands, for it is his creation. And I leave my flesh to the earth, for it emerged from there; it is just dirt, just clay. I, Don Toribio Cortés, set down my testament here; it is [done] with my complete voluntary will, for no one forced me. Before my witnesses, four of whom are noble elders of Ollac [and] six [other] people: Juan Tlapaltecatl of Ollac, Francisco Tlapaltecatl of Tlapallan, Don Miguel García of Analco, Toribio Sánchez of Calnahuac, Felipe Ollacatl of Ollac, Miguel Analcatl of Analco, Francisco Tocalpanecatl of Ixtlahuaca, Pedro Chiapanecatl of Huaxtla, Francisco Huitznahuatl of Otlan. They are my witnesses, before whom is set down my testament, the many things down my testament, my wishes about the many things that are to be necessary for my soul. V The first thing I say, I, Don Toribio Cortés: When I die, I ask that my body be buried there in the newly built church. For my body to be buried, an offering of two pesos, four tomines is to be paid to the church. V The second thing I say about my desires: I ask that my body be wrapped in a habit. An offering of five pesos is to be paid to the church for the substitute habit, for I am asking for the habit voluntarily. V The third thing I say about my wishes: I am giving the singers, the cantors, two pesos so that they will come to take my body. I ask that they say [sing] four prayers for the dead for me on the road. My children know about however many of the prayers for the dead they are to make for me. V The fourth chapter I say about my wishes: I am leaving 2 pesos to the Hospital; [the funeral procession] will be celebrated with candles; they are to be burnt along the road when they come to take my body. V The fifth thing I say, I, Don Toribio Cortés, about my wishes: I ask for ten masses to be said for me. An offering of 25 pesos is to be paid to the church. When I die, the 25 pesos are [to be] left to the church immediately. They are to deliver it as I set down in my testament before my witnesses.
V ynic ChiquaÇentlamantli niquitohua y notlanequiliS yntla Cuenmanian ninomiquiliS yntla yohuatzinCo auh yn iquac toCos y nonaCayo yn teotlac niman pisperas nopã mitos auh yntla otlac [sic] ninomiquilis anoÇo yohuatzinCo yn ÇaÇo quenmanian nechmolnamiquilis y noteouh dius auh yn iquac yn toCos y nonaCayo y yohuatzinCo nimã Çentetl miSSa nopã mitos amo polihuiS yn isquitlamãtli y notlanequilis yn oniquito yn itech monequiS y nanima ynic quimotlayoColilis y noteouh dius ynic quimac noyliliS [sic: noyoliliz(tli)] == V ynic ChiContlamantli niquitohua y nehuatl don toribio Cortez çetl oCatCa nochpotzin ytoCa doña ana Cortez Xiloyectzin çan niçel nopiltzin oCatca auh omomiquili auh çetl yc moCauhtiuh noxhuiuhtzin ytoCa doña loÇia Cortez Ca noÇihuatzintli omonamicti teteCala don thomas triSuel auh niquitohua y notlatol y notlanequiliS y nehuatl don toribio Cortez ytla Cana Çan niCan omonamictiani y noxhuiuh doña loSia ma yca moyeztaCan yn ixquich y noCal auh ynin Ca hueCa yn omonamicti auh niqutohua y notlanequiliS yn ixquich noCatl [sic] yn tecpanCali yc Catqui ymac niCahua y noteztigoshuan quinamaCasque yn tetl auh yn aquin quiCohuas maCuilpohuali pss = 1oo ps = quitemaCas yn tomin auh yn aquin quiCohuas yn tetl yn ano Caxtiltecatl niman quiquixtlis auh amo yhuan yn tlali y monamaCas Çan yxquich y tetl auh yn iquac yn omoten yn maCuilpohuali peso maCos yn noxhuiuh yn doña loçia Cortez honpohuali psus auh yn onpohuali peSuS notech monequiS yey miSSa nopan mituz auh yehuan quiCahualihui y teopã y noteztigohua yn onpohuali peSuS auh yn Çenpohuali peSuS niquinmaCatiuh y noteztigohua quimoxexelhuisque yn izquintin tlacpac teneuhtiCate === V auh ynic chiCuetlamãtili niquitohua y notlanequilis yn Calmili yn tonatiuh yCalaquian manic nicmaCatiuh y noxhuiuh y doña LoSia Cortez yc hualaliz yn apantli yn quahuitl tequi yn temotiCac yn ochpãteco yn quahuitl tenqui [sic] honasi yn tlanihuis ayac quiCuilis Ca niCan nictlalitiuh y notlatol ==== V auh ynic chiuhnahutlamãtli niquitohua y notlanequilis yehuatl y noxhuiuh dona LoÇia Cortez nicmaCatiuh yn ahuehuetitlan manic yn tlalquactli [sic] yhuan yn oCotepec manic yn tlalhuactli yn tlallapãco yn otentli quitoCatoc yhuan y milpitzactli yn teopãCaltitlan yhuã CopalhuaCan mili yhuã teopan quiahuac y hueymili ynahuaCayotoc auh y mayeque oCatCa Ca mochitin tequitCapan omopuhque Ca ye oquiCauhque yn pilali auh yehuãtin quimati yntla ocçepa quihualmatiSque yn pillali Ca quitequipanosque y noxhuiuh doña LoÇia Cortez === V The sixth thing I say about my wishes: If I die sometime early in the morning, my body is to be buried in the afternoon, whereupon an evening Mass is to be said for me. If I die in the afternoon or in the early morning in any manner [when] my deity, God will remember me [i.e. when I am dead], my body is to be buried in the morning [and] a Mass is to be said for me. Nothing I have stated in my will is to be destroyed; what is necessary for my soul is to be fashioned by my deity God, for he gave me my life. The seventh thing I say, I, Don Toribio Cortés: My late daughter doña Ana Cortés Xiloyactzin was my only child. But she died. Now only my granddaughter named doña Lucia Cortés is left, and she was married in Tetecala to don Tomás Trisuel. I say in my statement that it is my wish, I, Don Toribio Cortés, that if somehow doña Lucia had just been married here, my entire house would be with her. But she was married a long way off. Thus I say that it is my wish that I am leaving my entire house, the palace, in the hands of my witnesses. They are to sell the stone. Whoever buys it is to pay 100 pesos in cash. Whoever will buy it is not to be a Spaniard. Then [the buyer] is to take [the stone] away, but the land is not to be sold, just the stone. When the 100 pesos are paid, my granddaughter Doña Lucia Cortés is to be given 40 pesos. Forty pesos will be required so that three masses will be said on my behalf. My witnesses are to leave the 40 pesos to the church. And I am giving 20 pesos to my witnesses. They are to divide up everything mentioned above. V The eighth thing I say about my desries: I am giving the calmili [field associated with the house] on the west to my granddaughter doña Lucia Cortés: When it comes to a canal at a cut tree [i.e. stump] it descends to Ochpantenco [or “to the edge of a wide road’], [and] at a tree stump it arrives at its end. No one is to take it from her, as I am setting it down here in my statement. V The ninth thing I say about my wishes: I am giving my granddaughter doña Lucia Cortés the non-irrigated land at Ahuehuetitlan and the non-irrigated land at Ocotepec, which is low-lying land following the edge of the road, and the narrow field next to the church, and the field at Copalhuacan and the large field laid out next to the entryway to the church. There were mayeque [dependents] assigned to work on it, but they have already left the pillalli [land of a noble]. They know that if the return again to the pillalli they are to serve my granddaughter doña Lucia Cortés.
V ynic matlactlamātli notlanequilis niquitohua y yehuatl y nomach don franco quauhpachiuhqui momaCatiuh yn tzaqualpanapan manic amilli yn ipa yoque [sic = yolque] mayeque auh yn mayeque quitequipanoque y noÇihuamotzin yn doña Juana Ca yuh quimatiuh y noyolo amo quitlaçotla yn ita yn don thoribio y nomachhuan auh oCÇepa niquitohua y notlatol ynin mayeque amo huel quinCuilis yn don thoribio ca ye ytech onicpuh y nomach don quauhpachiuhqui Ca nechtequipanohuaya yn mayeque ==== V auh ynic matlactlamãtli õçetl niquitohua y notlanequilis i yehuatl y nomach don franco quauhpachiuhqui nicmaCatiuh yn aCatonCo amilli yhuã yn tlalnecictepec manic amilli yhuan y tetlalpã manic amilli quauhtla tlatzintitla : yhuan y çaCamilpã manic yn tlalhuactli nicmaCatiuh y nomach don franco quauhpachiuhqui ===== V auh ynic mactlactlamãtli omome niquitohua y notlanequilis yn yehuatl y nomach franCa xiuhtlamiyahuatl yn quimoCahuilitiuh noteiCaCauhtzin yn don melor de los angeles nicmaCatihili [sic] yn Calmili y noCal ypãn iCac Ca tlacpateneuhtiCa yn tetl monamaCas auh yn Calmili yn tlali nicmaCatiuh ytech nipuhtiuh y nomach franCa xiuhtlamiyahuatl yn onaÇi ochpantenco y tlanihuic yc tlamelatiCaC yn apantli yn quahuitl tenqui yn temotiCac auh y tonatiuh yquiSayan oxomalCactiCa yn Calmili yn õcan oquitlaliCa tenextepantli GoVernador Cortez yhuan niCmaCatiuh y nomach yn franca xiuhtlamiahuatl yc çan Çe mieS yn iCalmil y noteyCauhtzin oCatCa don melCõr de los angeles ayac onCan tlatoS Ca nitiachCauh ynic nicxelotiuh yn tlali Ca nictlalitiuh notlatol Ca yn iquac yn otechCuilisquia y donoro Corthez yn toCalmil yhuan toCal Ca yc otitoteylhuique yn ixpantzinCo JustiÇia ynic otiquixtique yn tonaor Cortez auh y nehuatl Ca niteachCauh yaCachtopa onitlaCat auh yn iquac otimaCoque yn toCal yhuã yn toCalmil auh niman onicxelhui yn don thoribio yn Calmili yn axcan ypan Ca Çan ixquich onicmaCac amo tlalhuactli onicmaCac auh amo tle quimixtoquilis yn tlali y nomachhuan y noxhuihuan yni Capa Ca niCan nictlaitiuh yn notlatol auh y noteyCautzin don melor : oCatCa onicmaCac yn Calmili yhuã y tlalhuactli yn tlalcomolCo auh yn axCan yn ipan nomiquistêp[an] V The tenth thing I say about my desires: My nephew don Francisco Quauhpachiuhqui is being given the irrigated field located at Tzaqualpanapan, upon which the mayeque live. These mayeque serve my daughter-in-law Doña Juana. In this way my heart knows that her father, don Toribio, and my nephews do not love her. Again I say in my statement that don Toribio will not be able to take the mayeque, for I have already assigned them to my nephew don Francisco Quauhpachiuhqui, for the mayeque had served me. V The eleventh thing I say about my will: I am giving my nephew don Francisco Quauhpachiuhqui the irrigated field at Acatonco,, the irrigated field at Tlalnecictepec, and the irrigated field at Tetlalpan, And I am giving the non-irrigated land at Quauthtla, Tlatzintitla, and Zacamilpa to my nephew don Francisco Quauhpachiuhqui. V The twelfth thing I say about my will: My younger brother don Melchor de los Ángeles is leaving behind my niece Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahuatl [i.e. he has died]. ]. I am giving her the calmili, which is the site of the house sold off as stone mentioned above. I am giving the calmili, the land, to her; I am assigning it to my niece Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahuatl. It arrives at Ochpantenco [or “at the edge of the wide road”], below it goes straight to a canal; at a tree stump it descends in the east towards the calmili at Oxomalacac where the governor Cortés built a plaster wall. I am leaving it to my niece Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahuatl, for it was always the calmili of my younger brother, the late don Melchor de los Angeles. No one is to speak up about it, for I, the older brother, shared the land with him, as I am setting down in my statement. When our governor Cortés tried to take our calmili and house from us, we complained before the authorities [justicia], so we evicted our governor Cortés. I am the older brother, who was first born. When we were given our house and our calmili I, Don Toribio, shared the calmili with him [the younger brother]. Now I have given everything on it; it was not non-irrigated land that I gave him. He [the governor Cortés] is not to claim anything from my nephews and grandchildren, where I am setting it down here in my statement. I left the calmili and the non-irrigated land at Tlacomulco to my late younger brother, Don Melchor. Today, at the edge of my death /
y notzonquiÇaliSpan oCÇepa niquinxelhuitiuh yn tlalli y nomachuan y noxhuihuan yniC amo yn nechmotlatzaCuiltilis y noteouh dius auh y nomach yn franca xiuhtlamiyahuatl ayac quiCuilis auh ca niquitohua y notlatol yntla momiquilis y nomach yn franca xiuhtlamiyahuatl yn tlali onicmaCac ConCuizque yn ioquichtihuan auh yn ipanpa amo tleyn niquinmaCatiuh yn gaspar yn Balthasar anmoquitohua [anmo quitohua] yn motolinia yn totlatzin yn ma tiqualehuaCan ma ytlantoYeCan Çan telpochtlahueliloque === V ynic matlactli homei niquitohua y notlanequilis yn yehuatl y nomah yn franca xiuhtlamiyahuatl nicmaCatiuh yn temetlayoCan y manic tlali tlalhuactli yhuan yn oCotepec manic tlalhuactli y texCalticpac opehua onaÇi othotliCa ayac quiCuilis y nomach yn franca xiuhtlmiyahual yn isquitetl onicmaCac Ca niCā nictlalitiuh notlatol nicneltilitiuh auh yn ixquich yn oniquinxexelhui y tlali y nomachhuan y noxhuihuan Ca mochi onicchihuaya Canel niteachCauh Ca notech quiCauhtiuh yn totatzin Catca yn teohuatzin yntla oCate nopilhuã Ca yehuãtin yntech niCauhtias yn tlali auh ynin Cayac onechmomaquili yn toteouh dius Ca yehuãtzin y nomachhuã y noxhuihuã y niquinmaCatiuh yn tlali yn imeyxtin y niCan ypan y CuiliuhtiCate y notestamento y niquinteneuhtiuh === V auh ynic matlactlamãtli onahui niquitohua y nehuatl don toribio Cortez y noxhuihuan y nomachhuan yntla quimonequitis yn toteo dius, yntla quinmoÇepahuapahuiliS yntlaCamo mopilhuatisque auh yn tlali yn oniquinmaCatehua yn oniquinxexelhuitehuac yehuantin quichihuasque yn aquique onemisque auh oCÇepa niquitohua y notlatol yntla Çetl quimohueyquechilis yn toteo dius y nomachhuã y noxhuihuan yntla mopilhuatisque yehuatl quiÇentlalis yn ixquich yn tepetenchi yn tecpilali ayac onCan tlatos yn amo totlaCameCayo yn amo tohuayolqui Ca Çan yehuantinin y nomachhuan y noxhuihuan yn imeyxtin y niquinteneuhtiuh yn ipan y CuiliuhtiCate y noteztamento ==== /, at the end of my life, again I am dividing the land among my nephews and grandchildren so that my deity, God, will not punish me. No one is to take it from my niece Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahuatl. I say in my statement that if my niece Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahuatl dies, her older brothers are to take the land I gave her. I am not giving anything to Gaspar and Baltasar: You say that “our uncle is poor,” that “he brought us up this way.” But they are just dissolute youths. V The thirteenth [thing] I say about my will: I am giving my niece Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahuatl non-irrigated land at Temetlayopan [or “place covered with stone used for metates”], and the non-irrigated land at Ocotepec. It begins above the crag and arrives at the edge of the roads. No one is to take it from my niece Francisca Xiuhtlamiyahual. Everything I gave her I set down here in my statement and am verifying it. I divided all the land among my nephews and my grandchildren, for I have done all of it, since I am the eldest brother. Our late father, Teohuantzin, left it to me. If my children existed I would leave them the land. But my deity God did not give any to me. So I give the land to all three of my nephews and grandchildren, as is being written here on my testament; I am naming them. V The fourteenth thing I say, I Don Toribio Cortés: If our Lord God desires it, if he will cause all of my grandchildren and nephews to grow up [i.e. let them survive]; if otherwise they do not have children, [then] the land I left to them, which I divided among them, those who survive are to do it [i.e. divide the land]. Once again I say [in] my statement, that if our Lord God makes [even] one [of the offspring] of my nephews and grandchildren become an adult, if they have children, [someone] is to gather/combine the Tecpilali at Tepetenchi. No one there is to say that "he is not of our lineage, it is not of our relatives.” For they are just my nephews and grandchildren, all three of whom I name in the writing of my testament.
V ynic Caxtoltlamatli niquitohua y notlanequilis y yehuatl y nonamiC Çihuapilli doña madallena Cortez ayoCac ytechpa onicquixima yn piltzintli auh nicmaCatiuh Çenpohuali psos ytech monequiS yhua CaSo ontetl tlapechtli çentel metlatl nahui ayac onCan tlatos Ca nicneltilitiuh nictlalitiuh notlatol ====== V ynic Caxtotlamãtli oÇetl niquitohua notlanequilis omentin otlacpahuitectzitzihuan Çihuatzitzintzin onechmotequipanilhuique atoltzintli onechmomaquilique auh niquitohua y notlanequiliS y maria tiaCapan nicmaCatiuh ChiquaÇen pss yhuan Çentetl CaSo yhuã çe tlatli [sic = metlatl] auh y Juana teiÇictiuh nicmaCatiuh maCuili pss yhuan Çetl CaSo yhuan metlatl Çetl auh yn ixquich yn tocalaqui yn teContzintli yn Contzintli mochi niquinmaCatiuh y notlacpahuitectzitzinhuã yehuatl quimati yn innãtzin y doña magnallena Cortez quinxelhuiz ypilhuan Ca ytech niCauhtiuh === V ynic Caxtolamãtli omome niquitohua y notlanequiliS y yehuatl y nonamic y doña magna Cortez yntla oc niCan omoyetzinotaz yn quexquich cahuitl oquitech opouhtiez yn Cali auh yntla mohuiCaS yn ichantzinCo yn tlaquiltenãCo nimã quinamaCasque y noteztigohuã yn Cali yn iquac yn ontlamis nomiSSa yn isquitetl y niquitlantiuh yn tlacpa teneuhtiCa y Cuiliuhtica === V ynic Caxtoltlamãtli omey niquitohua y notlanequilis yn ixquich omopixCac y Çentli yn quexquich moyaz yn tlayoli quixelhuisque y nonamic doña magna cortez oc niCan quimoqualtitez auh yn ixeliuhCa yn tlayoli notech pohuis yn iquac miSa nopan mitos -- yn acme [?] notepalehuiCahuan yntech monequiS === V oyzquitlamãtli yn yn [sic] onicteneuh yn ipan noteStamento y niquiliuhtica y notlanequilis yn imixpã y noteztigohuan yn iSquintin yn tlacpac teneuhticate ma quimatiCan yn quimoCuitlahuia yn JuStiSia yntla quenmanian ymixpan neSis y noteztamento onCan quitasque yn iuh onichipan [sic: onichuipan] yn izquitlamantli y notlanequilis yn itech monequis yn nanima -- yhuan y no yuh niquitlamamaCatiuh y noxhuihuan yn nomachhuan yn imeyxtin yn tlacpa teneuhtiCate ca imixipan V The fifteenth thing I say about my wishes: My wife, the noblewoman Doña Magdalena Cortés, and I no longer have living children. I am leaving 20 pesos that will be needed by her, and two kettles, a bed, and 4 metates. No one is to say anything there, for I am verifying [what] I am setting down in my statement. V The sixteenth thing I say about my desires: Both of my stepdaughters served me [with] atole, they gave it to me. I say that it is my wish that I am giving María Tiacapan six pesos, a kettle, and a metate. To Juana Teicictiuh I am giving 5 pesos, a kettle, and a metate. Everything we possess [in the house] , the clay pot and clay ladle [tecontzintli; xontzintli], I am giving it all to my stepdaughters. Their mother, Doña Magdalena Cortés, is to divide it among her children, for Their mother, doña Magdalena Cortés, knows [how] she is to divide [these things] among her children, for I am leaving it up to her. V The seventeenth thing I say about my wishes: If my wife, Doña Magdalena Cortés, had always still had a house here forever, it would have been assigned to her; but if she will go to her home in Tlaquiltenango then my witnesses are to sell the house when my masses end, however many I am requesting [as] mentioned above in writing. V The eighteenth thing I say about my desires: They are to share all the ears of maize that were harvested [and] however many maize kernels will come of it with my wife, Doña Magdalena Cortés, who is to consume it here. And separately maize kernels will be assigned on my behalf when a Mass will be celebrated for me to those who are my aides, as is necessary for them. All the things I mention in the testament I am writing in the presence of all of my witnesses named above are my desires. May he who takes care of it, the magistrate, know [that] if sometime my testament will appear before them [Spanish officials], there they [the witnesses] are to see how I arranged all of the things, my wishes that are necessary for my soul, and also how I am thus giving things to my grandchildren and nephews [and] nieces, all three of whom are mentioned above. It is [done] in the presence, /
y noteztigohuan don migl gara thoribio Sanchez frnco tlapalteCatl Juan tlapalteCatl huehuetque felipe ollaCatl migl analCatl franco thoCalpaneCatl peo ChiapaneCatl franco huitznahuatl o yehuantinin y noteztigohuan auh yn otlamiC yn otzonquis y noteztamento axCan llones yc maCuililhuitl yn itlapohuallo meztli disiemBre = 15:59 años auh ynic niCneltilia niCan nictlalia yn notoCa yhuan y nofirma yhuan y noteztigohuan quitlalia yn intoCa yhuan ynfirma auh yn amo quimati tlaCuilloli ypãpa quitlaliz yn intoCa : eso =================== don martin CortEs Juan tlapaltecatl don miguel gara thoribio Sanchez franco tlapalteCatl felipe olaCatl migl analcatl franco thoCalpaneCatl peo chiyapaneCatl franco huitznauatl nixpã omochiuh = franco romano eso / of my witnesses: Don Miguel García, Toribio Sánchez, Francisco Tlapaltecatl, Juan Tlapaltecatl, elders, Felipe Ollacatl, Miguel Analcatl, Francisco Tocalpanecatl, Pedro Chiapanecatl, Francisco Huitznahuatl; all of them are my witnesses. Here my testament ends, it concludes, today, Monday, the fifth day counted in the month of December, 1559. So that I verify it, I set down my name and my signature here, and my witnesses set down their names and signatures; they do not know how to write, so the notary will set down their names. Don Martín Cortés Juan Tlapaltecatl Don Miguel García Francisco Tlapaltecatl Felipe Olacatl Miguel Analcatl Francisco Tocalpanecatl Pedro Chiyapanecatl Francisco Huitznahuatl It was done in my presence, Francisco Romano, notary
Yn tehuantin pipiltin : Don torivio Cortes : gobernador yhuan tehuãtin : alcaldes regidores : nican villa quauhnahuac : Santa maria aSupSion : ticpachuhua tictequipanohua yn ialtepetzin : yhuan toJusSia [sic] yn ixpantzinco : yn tohueytlatoCatzin : rey yhuan totlatoCatzin marqueS del balle : anmo aquin quixitiniS : yn notlatol ynic niCan nictecpantiuh : Ca mochi altepetlali yn niCan villa quauhnahuac Ca ypan tlaCalaquisque : yn ipilhuantzitzinhuan diuS : ypan quimantasque yn itlaCalaquiltzin : noeStro Señor rey : yhuan totlatoCatzin marques del balle hamo quemanian : tleyn quitoS noSo quinquixtiliS : quimaxCatis yn tlali : anmo quenmanian : aca Se CaxtilteCatl : noSo mestiSo : noSo molato noSo çe teopixCatzintli : Ca huel toaxCa altepetlali yn aquin quinmonemiltilis : dius Ca quiteytitiS ynin noteztamento : yn aquin quimaXCatiS : Ca quimomachiltiS noestro Señor rey : yehuatzin quinmopalehuilis : yn ipilhuantzintzinhuan dius : yntla yxpan yn pipiltin yhuan noteztigohuan tlantiCa tlamelahua : SaCanCo ytlamian telihuitl : tlamelahua yhuetziyan tonatiuh ypan huey atl hualamelahua telquechecan tlamelahua miChapan tenanpa : tlamelahua tetziCaaC tlamelahua tlapitzaCo tlaltataCo tlalmachiotl tlamelahua atzinco yhuan popotla tlamelahua quauhtamala tlamelahua quauhtla : yca huitzillac tlamelahua Cuezcontitlan : hual temo quexomalitlan yCa tlamelahua tetenCo : hual tlamelahua texalpan yca xiuhtepec hualamelahua tetzontepeC yCa yzCuintepec yCa CoCotehuaCan hual pano yca huey atl quihualnamiqui SaCanCo yn ipan lones yhuan metzli yc maCuil ylhuitl ytlapohual diSiemBre : ypan xihuitl = 15:59 años ========================= niCan tictlalia totoCa yhuan tofirma ynic neltilistli == Don martin Cortez == Don torivio Cortez == Juan tlapaltecatl Don migl garsia Don toribio Sanchez = franco lopes tecpanecatl franco tlapaltecatl felipe olacatl migl analcatl = peo chiapamecatl franco huiznahuatl = nixpan omochiuh franco ramano eSCno == We the nobles, Don Toribio Cortés, governor, and we the alcaldes [and] regidores here at the Villa of Santa María de la Asunción Quauhnahauc: We govern and serve here at her altepetl, and our authority is in the presence of [i.e. in the name of] our great ruler the King and our ruler the Marqués del Valle. No one is to destroy my statement about how we are laying out all the altepetl land [altepetlalli; i.e. corporate property] here in the Villa of Quauhnahuac. God's children [i.e. the people] are to enter it ; from it they are to pay the tribute of our Lord the King and our ruler the Marqués del Valle. Never is someone to speak about it, nor is someone to evict them [or] appropriate the land, never a Spaniard, nor a mestizo, nor a mulatto, nor a priest, for it is really our property, altepetl land. God is the one who is to maintain them, for he is to make people see this, my testament. Our lord the King is to know about whoever will appropriate it; he is to help God's children. In their presence, the nobles and my witnesses, it is being laid out: straight at Zacanco, as it ends at a ridge [telilhuitl], straight to the west as the large river [huey atl = possibly a lake?], comes straight to Telquechecan, straight to Tenanpa, straight to Tetzicaac [Tetzicoal?], straight to Tlapitzaco Tlaltataco [or “place of humped, bumpy land?”] at the land marker [tlalmachiotl], straight to Atzinco and Popotla, straight to Quauhtamala, straight to Cuauhtla by [yca = “by way of?”] Huitzillac, straight to Cuezcontitlan, coming to descend at Quexomalitlan, by way of straight to Xiuhtepec, comes straight to Texalpan by way of Yzcuintepec, by way of Cocotehuacan, comes to ford at the big river, [and] comes together at Zacanco. On Monday, the 5th of December, in the year 1559. Here we set down our names and signatures, so that it is true. Don Martín Cortés Don Toribio Cortés Juan Tlapaltecatl Don Miguel García Francisco López Tecpanecatl Francisco Tlapaltecatl Felipe Olacatl Miguel Analcatl Pedro Chiapamecatl Francisco Huitznahuatl It was done in my presence, Francisco Romano, notary
En el nombre de Dios padre Dios hijo Dios espiritu santto = Digo yo Don thoribio Cortes [--] del barrio de Olac Tepetenchi que estando mio enferme ya para morir quando nuestro Sr. cea seruido y [--] estos mui enfermo me hablo con mi huicio y con todo mi entendimientto y que mi alma y mi espirita aa dejo delante de la Presienssa de Nr senor y mi Cuerpo lo dejo a la tierra que de ella sali y que soy tierra y lodo yo Don thoribio Cortes Digo yo que Pongo mi testamento Contodo mi corason para que naiden me q consele delante de los testigos que son quarto prinsipales del Barrio de Olac viejos y seis personas Juan tlapaltecal olac tlapalteca tlapala Don Mig.Garzia de Analco, thoribio Sanches Calnahuac feliphe olacte Olac. Migel analco - []calpanecal yxtlahuacan = pedro Chiapanecal quatla = huisna[--] tzotlan = questos son mis testigos y delante de elloz hago mi testamento de todas las cosas que yo dispusiere para lo que es menester para mi alma == el Primer Capitulo Dice yo Don toribio Cortes que si me muriere pido []vamento que se haga en la yglecia mi entierro de mi cuerpo que cea de enterrar y an de entrar la limosna en la Yglecia dos pessos y quatro tomines == otro Capitulo digo yo ques mi voluntad un abito que pido para mi mortaja de mi Cuerpo y que se de la limosna a la vol[]cia sinco pesos por el abito ques de mi corason esta petision == otro Capitulo digo you ques mi voluntad que a los cantores d[] dos pesos para que bengan por mi Cuerpo y pido quatro responsoz que digan en el Camino, y que mis jihos Saben lo que an [] dar y que se digan los responsos == otro Capitulo que hasen quatro Digo ques mi Voluntad que en el hosptal dexo una limosna de do pesos de Alquileer de la Sera que arda en el Camino quaando bengan por mi Cuerpo == Con esto son sinco Capitulos, Digo yo Don thoribio Cortes que es mi Voluntad que se me digan dies misas por mi alma [-----] la limosna de veintte y sinco pesos en la Yglesia [--]
/ que luego se baian a dexar los Veinte y sinco pesos a ala Yglesia delante de mis testigoz == otro Capitulo seis digo ques mi voluntad que si al tiempo que me muriere que si fuere por la manana quando se entierre mi Cuerpo me Canten una missa, o si es a la tarde me Canten una vixilia onfriere sobretar[] e o de noche o la oras que fuere sea cuerden de Dios quando mentierren [sic] mi cuerpo si es por la manana que se me diga una missa que no falta lo que engo dho y es mi uoluntad y es menestter para mi alma pues es mi Voluntad y la del senor Dios primero por que sea seruia = Capitulo Siette Digo yo don toribio Cortes ques una mi hija llamada D.a Ana cortes xilosechil sola ella mi hija la qual murio y otra mi nieta D. Ana cortes, y otra llamada D. lucia Cortes muger que se Casso en el pueblo de Tetecala con don Thomas Crisue[] Digo Con estas palabras ques mi Voluntad que yo don toribio cortes que si fuera de aqui con quien casso mis nieta D.a lusia que se tubieran quanto tiempos quisieran en mis cassas y aora estan tan lexoz adonde se casaron y digo yo ques mi Voluntad que yo don toribio Cortes que quando a mis casas se la dexo a mis testigoz que las vendan y las piedras quien la mecare que den siento pesoz y el que Comprare las piedras si es sepanol que las saque luego que las tierras no, que solo las piedras y quando aigandad [?] los sient [sic] pesoz que se los den a mi nietta D.a lusia Cortes quarenta pesoz i otros quarenta que se me digan de missas que [] a dexar los a la yglesia mis testigoz y los otros veinte se los doy a mis testigoz para que se los repartan todos los questan ya asenta[] otro Capitulo digo yo ques mi Voluntad que las tierras de juntta a mi cassa questan Por donde Se mete el Sol se las dexo a mi nietta D.a lucia Cortes y que las tierras llgan hasta el Camino real dode llegan y mas abajo que naiden solas quite pues los pongo aque ser mi palabra == otro Capitulo ques mi Voluntad ue mi nietta D.a lusia le doy las tierras donde esta el sabino que no tiene vieg[] y otras tierras questan en ocotepec que no tienen riego que banp[] el apantle mui angostas questar estan detras de la Yglecia [] las tierras questan en Copalhuacan junto a la Yglecia que los
muis grande las quales dejaron y[]asas unos tirbutarios y aora se las tengo dadas a otroz paraque tributen con ellas y que si quisieren bolber los primeroz que las colan y trauajen y sirban a mis nietta D. lucia Cortes, otro Capitulo es mi Voluntad y digo que mi sobrino D.n quaupahuic le doy las tierras questan en Chaqualpanapa debajo de riego donde labran los que le sirban a mi nietta que ya se que no han de querer a mi nuera y el padre de mis sobrinos, otra ves digo que mis palabra vale y no les quite don thoribio nada por que yo se las doy a mi sobrino don cuauhuapahuic porque me a seruido == otro Capitulo digo yo ques mi voluntad que mis sobrino don cuauhpahuic le doy la milpa llamada acatengo debajo de riego y otras tierras llamadas tlanehictepec questan debajo de riego y otras llamadas tetlalpa tambien dejbajo de riego y otras tierras llamadas cuautla tlachintetla tambien otras llamadas sacamilpan no tienen riego que todas se las doy a mi sobrino Don cuauhpachuic otro Capitulo digo yo ques mi Voluntad que tengo otra sobrina huistlamiyahual le dejo las tierras que son de mi milpa que eran de Don Melchor de los Angeles las quales le doy y mi cassa questa mas ariua que se bendan las piedras, y las tierras se las dejo a mi sobrina D.a y llegan al camino mas abajo derecho por el apantle por el Arbol Cortado para abajo por donde sale el sol asia el rincon junto a la milpa donde habian puesto tenextlepantle el G.or don thoribio Cortes se las dejo a mi Sobrina d.a huistlamiyahual y que estan juntas con las tierras de mi her.o don melchor de los Angeles que naiden hable que soy her.o maior y dexo las tierras quando nos las queria quitar toribio Cortes y las casas y tierras, por lo qual nos querellamoz delante de nuestra justisia y las Sacamos con nuiestro gobernador Cortes y yo que soy hermano mairo y el primero que nassi, y quando noz dieron las tierras y cassas las partimos con don toribio las