Eventually they settled in the Valley of Mexico and founded their capital, Tenochtitlan, in At the beginning of the sixteenth century it was one of the largest cities in the world. Turquoise mosaic mask human faceC. This previously nomadic tribe was not welcomed by the local inhabitants who viewed them as inferior and undeveloped.
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The Aztec language, Nahuatl, was the dominant language in central Mexico by the mids. Numerous Nahuatl words borrowed by the Spanish were later absorbed into English as well, including chile or chili, avocado, chocolate, coyote, peyote, guacamole, ocelot and mescal.
When the Aztecs saw an eagle perched on a cactus on the marshy land near the southwest border of Lake Texcoco, they took it as a sign to build their settlement there.
Typical Aztec crops included maize cornalong with beans, squashes, potatoes, tomatoes and avocadoes; they also supported themselves through fishing and hunting local animals such as rabbits, armadillos, snakes, coyotes and wild turkey.
Their relatively sophisticated system of agriculture including intensive cultivation of land and irrigation methods and a powerful military tradition would enable the Aztecs to build a successful state, and later an empire.
The Aztec Empire Inunder their leader Itzcoatl, the Aztecs formed a three-way alliance with the Texcocans and the Tacubans to defeat their most powerful rivals for influence in the region, the Tepanec, and conquer their capital of Azcapotzalco.
By the early 16th century, the Aztecs had come to rule over up to small states, and some 5 to 6 million people, either by conquest or commerce. The Aztec civilization was also highly developed socially, intellectually and artistically. It was a highly structured society with a strict caste system; at the top were nobles, while at the bottom were serfs, indentured servants and slaves.
The Aztec faith shared many aspects with other Mesoamerican religions, like that of the Mayanotably including the rite of human sacrifice. The Aztec calendar, common in much of Mesoamerica, was based on a solar cycle of days and a ritual cycle of days; the calendar played a central role in the religion and rituals of Aztec society.
Cordobars reports on his return to Cuba prompted the Spanish governor there, Diego Velasquez, to send a larger force back to Mexico under the command of Hernan Cortes. In MarchCortes landed at the town of Tabascowhere he learned from the natives of the great Aztec civilization, then ruled by Moctezuma or Montezuma II.
Defying the authority of Velasquez, Cortes founded the city of Veracruz on the southeastern Mexican coast, where he trained his army into a disciplined fighting force.
Cortes and some soldiers then marched into Mexico, aided by a native woman known as Malinche, who served as a translator. Thanks to instability within the Aztec empire, Cortes was able to form alliances with other native peoples, notably the Tlascalans, who were then at war with Montezuma.
Though the Aztecs had superior numbers, their weapons were inferior, and Cortes was able to immediately take Montezuma and his entourage of lords hostage, gaining control of Tenochtitla.
The Spaniards then murdered thousands of Aztec nobles during a ritual dance ceremony, and Montezuma died under uncertain circumstances while in custody. Cuauhtemoc, his young nephew, took over as emperor, and the Aztecs drove the Spaniards from the city. After his victory, Cortes razed Tenochtitla and built Mexico City on its ruins; it quickly became the premier European center in the New World.
Start your free trial today.The Aztec capital city, Tenochtitlan, was founded on a small piece of land in the western part of Lake Texcoco. The city was contained within high mountains and surrounding lake and marshes. To create living and farming space the Aztecs sank piles into the marshes and formed small land masses called chinampas, or floating gardens.
Aztec Introduction to the Aztecs (Mexica) Coatlicue The Templo Mayor and the Coyolxauhqui Stone Codex Borgia Tlaloc vessel Aztec stone sculpture on The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History.
Aztec Empire from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Templo Mayor virtual visit (in Spanish) Cite this . Aztec (Mexica), an introduction During the twelfth century C.E. the Aztec (or Mexica*) were a small and obscure tribe searching for a new homeland. Eventually they settled in the Valley of Mexico and founded their capital, Tenochtitlan, in Aztec Browse this content Introduction to the Aztecs (Mexica) Coatlicue The Templo Mayor and the Coyolxauhqui Stone The Aztec empire crumbled after the defeat of Tenochtitlan in Aztec stone sculpture on The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History.
Aztec Empire from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Templo. Watch video · Early Aztec History; The Aztec Empire; Introduction. Thanks to instability within the Aztec empire, Cortes was able to form alliances with other native peoples, notably the Tlascalans. Read and learn for free about the following article: Aztec (Mexica), an introduction.