Jessica Manzi, Musa Mahoney, Edith Saint Preux, group 4, period 2
Presentation by: JM, ESP, and MM.
<ul><li>The Aztec civilization began in the Valley of Mexico. Their empire had many cities and towns. The early Aztec settlers build log rafts and planted seed to develop a more solid and stable ground for them to build homes. When the Aztecs entered the Valley of Mexico in the 12th and 13th century, they were an unknown group of people, but by the time the Spanish arrived in the 16 th century, the Aztecs had great power. The Aztecs however, did not have a written record. Their history has been passed from generation to generation by word of mouth. They Aztecs worked hard to make the land suitable for living. They invented and created many things to help them with this process. </li></ul>J.M.
<ul><li>The Aztecs were originally poor, nomadic people from harsh deserts of Northern Mexico. In 1200 AD, the Aztecs arrived in the Valley of Mexico; home to a number of small cities. The Aztec Sun god, Huitzilopochtli, told them to find a city of their own . Where an eagle, sitting on the stem of a prickly pear was holding a serpent in his talons and his wings were open to the sun. Eventually, the Aztecs became the greatest empire of Mesoamerica. </li></ul>M.M.
<ul><li>Popcorn. Many people all over the world today eat popcorn. But no one has ever wondered where it came from. The Aztecs did not create popcorn though. They simply introduced it to the rest of the world. Another invention of the Aztecs is the calendar wheel. But, it is not the kind of calendar that we know today. It was a 365 day calendar broken up into 18 month periods with 5 days left over at the end. Although the calendar was invented already, their accuracy is impeccable. Another invention created by the Aztecs is the passion flower. It is thought that the passion flower helped the as an herbal remedy for muscle spasms or people who had to undergo surgery. Today the passion flower is not used, but it is said to be a great herbal remedy for insomnia and hypertension. </li></ul>J.M.
<ul><li> The religion of the Aztecs covered a "hierarchy of gods" </li></ul><ul><li>*The top 3 gods were: Huitzilopochtli (the "hummingbird wizard), Tezcatlipoca (“smoking mirror”), and Quetzalcoatl (“sovereign plumed serpent”). </li></ul><ul><li> Quetzalcoatl (“sovereign plumed serpent”) </li></ul><ul><li>*People who practiced this religion believed there were also 4 sub-gods beneath the initial 3 and 'infinite amount' under the latter </li></ul><ul><li>*An important aspect relating to the gods was the sacrificial ritual; the offering up of sacrifices for their deities whom they believed required the nourishment of blood (by bloodletting) and live human hearts (cut out of the body). A large amount of sacrificial "income" came from conquest. </li></ul>E.S.P.
<ul><li>Aztec clothing was often made of beautiful fabric. The quality of the cloth was generally depended on the wealth of the wearer. Art of clothes was an important craft of the ancient Aztecs. Aztec clothes contained vivid colors and intricate designs. </li></ul><ul><li>The Aztec women were responsible for making Aztec clothing. In order to make thread they first twisted cotton and fibers onto a stick, which was weighted down with a clay spindle whorl. Through their simple hand tools, they were able to use this thread to make clothe for use in capes and loincloths for the men. The capes were generally worn knotted over just one shoulder. The female Aztec dress, on the other hand, consisted of sleeveless blouses and long wraparound skirts. The Aztec headdress was also made with this cloth and contained knotted feathers created by Aztec craftsmen. </li></ul><ul><li>Jewelry was also an important component of Aztec dress. The amount of decoration on Aztec clothing indicated the wealth of the wearer. Popular additions to Aztec Indian clothing included copper, silver, gold, turquoise, emerald and jade. These stones were cut for use on Aztec clothing with a rawhide cord and a special type of abrasive sand mixed with water. </li></ul>M.M.
<ul><li>The Aztec city of Tenochtitlan is an example of how advanced the Aztec empire was. It consisted of palaces, temples, markets, governmental buildings, and residential homes. Residential districts were even connected by streets and avenues! Canals divided the city, allowing canoes to bring people and cargo to the city center. Aqueducts funneled fresh water in the city, from the mainland. </li></ul><ul><li>Aztec state based its power on military conquest and tribute from their conquered people. They demanded tribute of gold, maize, cacao beans, cotton jade, and other products. When local rulers failed to pay tribute, they were defying the Aztecs. Aztec warriors would destroy villages and slaughter the inhabitants. </li></ul>M.M.
<ul><li>* The decline and fall of the Aztec empire came under the rule of Moctezuma II. The Spanish invasion, led by Hernan Cortez, interrupted his reign. * The inferiority of the Aztecs' weapons eventually counted against them. Moctezuma II was killed by the conquerers in 1524 * The evasion happened to be at the end of an Aztec era (52) years </li></ul>ESP