under the sponsorship of ILV, A.C.
San Pablo Villa de Mitla is located east of Oaxaca City, in the state of Oaxaca in southern Mexico (see map). It is the center of an important variety of Zapotec.
There are more than 15,000 inhabitants, according to the authorities in Mitla (cited from personal communication 2004).
The town of Mitla, which means ‘place of the dead’ in Nahuatl (Aztec) is home to some very well-preserved Zapotec ruins which are remarkable for the detail of the fretwork (grecas) on the walls. Through the years, Mitla has become a popular tourist destination.
The word form for ‘Zapotec’ is cognate in many Zapotec languages, but each variant seems to have its own form. The Mitleños call their language didxsaj. The root didx means ‘word’; saj means ‘slick’. Hence the word means ‘word grease’. In other words it is the language that comes out easily, their hometown language. The other languages are didxzijt ‘word far’ or ste'ca didxsaj ‘another slick word’ for any language other than their own.
—Morris Stubblefield and Carol (Miller) Stubblefield
- Gramática zapoteca de Mitla
- Diccionario zapoteco de Mitla
- Mitla Zapotec texts
- "The story of Läy and Gisaj: a Zapotec sun and moon myth"