This article analyzes the complex and sometimes deceiving relationship that might exist between the pictographic text and toponymic glosses in Oaxacan screenfolds from the sixteenth century. The case of the Codex Porfirio Díaz shows that these glosses represent not only boundaries of the cacicazgo of Tutepetongo but also lands and subject settlements within the cacicazgo. Despite their apparent relationship to the glyphs, the glosses do not translate the pictographic text. On the contrary, they reflect important changes in the indigenous conception of the cacicazgo.

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