The AztecsThe Aztecs
The Chichimec PeriodThe Chichimec Period
Cultural InnovationsCultural Innovations
Social/Political St...
The Chichimec PeriodThe Chichimec Period
The Aztec originated from somewhere in northThe Aztec originated from somewhere i...
The Aztecs finally found refuge on smallThe Aztecs finally found refuge on small
islands in Lake Texcoco where, in 1325,is...
Aztec Origin MythAztec Origin Myth
Little is known of the earliest Aztecs, they did not keepLittle is known of the earlies...
The Aztecs believed Huitzilopochtli their war god was their protector,The Aztecs believed Huitzilopochtli their war god wa...
What is the meaning of the wordWhat is the meaning of the word
Aztlan?Aztlan?
Aztlan is the mythical place of origin of th...
Mixeca/AztecMixeca/Aztec
Technically squatted in the area of Tenochtitlan andTechnically squatted in the area of Tenochtit...
Basin of MexicoBasin of Mexico
Chain of interconnected lakes, 3-6, butChain of interconnected lakes, 3-6, but
the Aztecs t...
Aztec EmpireAztec Empire
TenochtitlanTenochtitlan
How were they all fed?How were they all fed?
Used the Chinampas (floating gardens) forUsed the Chinampas (floating gardens...
ChinampasChinampas
However, although chinampas were veryHowever, although chinampas were very
productive, the number of pe...
ChinampasChinampas
Ancient Aztecs tending to chinampas
http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/aztec-society.htm
Cultural Innovations:Cultural Innovations:
Trade, Economics, Market SystemTrade, Economics, Market System
Part of inter-re...
Aztec Market (Tlateloco)Aztec Market (Tlateloco)
Market days were held once each five days, fourMarket days were held once...
Cultural InnovationsCultural Innovations
WritingWriting
– Nahuatl language spoken at conquest, livingNahuatl language spok...
Codex BorbonicusCodex Borbonicus
A scene from the Codex Borbonicus, which shows the
gods Tlachitonátiuh and Xolotl, while ...
Florentine CodexFlorentine Codex
Human sacrifice
http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/florentine-
codex.htm
Codex MendozaCodex Mendoza
Tribute
http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/codex-mendoza.htm
Cultural InnovationsCultural Innovations
ArtArt
– Stone carving to communicate ideas.Stone carving to communicate ideas.
–...
ArtArt
http://www.mesoweb.com/features/jpl/99.html
Obsidian vessel carvedObsidian vessel carved
in the shape of ain the sh...
JewelryJewelry
Necklaces found in the
Great Temple at Tenochtitlan
http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/aztec-jewelry.htm
MasksMasks
http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/aztec-masks.htm
Social StructureSocial Structure
Basic unit of social organizationBasic unit of social organization
– calpulli (clan)calpu...
Four principle social categories:Four principle social categories:
Pipiltin-Pipiltin-
– ruler of the city state and his re...
Political OrganizationPolitical Organization
Divine King or ruler of AztecDivine King or ruler of Aztec
Each city (other t...
Judicial branchJudicial branch
Both pipitlin and commoners chosen.Both pipitlin and commoners chosen.
higher and lower cou...
Rulers: Post 14Rulers: Post 14thth
CC
1Acamapichtli A.D.1376-13911Acamapichtli A.D.1376-1391
-married Ilancueil (“Toltec P...
Acamapichtli 1372-1391Acamapichtli 1372-1391
Aztec dynasty emerges ca. 1371Aztec dynasty emerges ca. 1371
name means "hand...
Huitzilihuitl 1391-1415Huitzilihuitl 1391-1415
"Humming Bird's Feather""Humming Bird's Feather"
– first wife was from Tacu...
Chimalpopoca 1415-1426Chimalpopoca 1415-1426
"Smoking Shield""Smoking Shield"
– half Tepanechalf Tepanec
– oversaw war wit...
Itzcoatl 1426-1440Itzcoatl 1426-1440
Chimalpopoca succeeded by uncle Itzcoatl (ObsidianChimalpopoca succeeded by uncle Itz...
Motecuhzoma IlhuicaminaMotecuhzoma Ilhuicamina
1440-14681440-1468
"Heaven Shooter“"Heaven Shooter“
began construction of T...
AXAYACATL 1469-1481AXAYACATL 1469-1481
Water Mask, Face of Water, Son of Moctezuma I.Water Mask, Face of Water, Son of Moc...
TIZOC 1481-1486TIZOC 1481-1486
““He Has Bled People, Jewell of the Sun”, was theHe Has Bled People, Jewell of the Sun”, wa...
AHUITZOTL 1486-1502AHUITZOTL 1486-1502
““Water Dog, Otter”. Was the third son of Moctezuma I.Water Dog, Otter”. Was the th...
MOCTEZUMA II 1502-1520MOCTEZUMA II 1502-1520
““Our Angry Looking God, He Who Frowned Like A Lord”Our Angry Looking God, He...
Moctezuma II
Moctezuma II:Moctezuma II:
Feathered HeadressFeathered Headress
Moctezuma II and CortesMoctezuma II and Cortes
His priestly training, particularly in the old ToltecHis priestly training,...
CUITLAHUAC 1520CUITLAHUAC 1520
Brief interim ruler between MotecuhzomaBrief interim ruler between Motecuhzoma
II and Cuauh...
CUAUHTEMOC 1520-1521CUAUHTEMOC 1520-1521
““DESCENDING EAGLE”, also known asDESCENDING EAGLE”, also known as "Prince Fallin...
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The Aztecs

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The Aztec /ˈæztɛk/[1] people were certain ethnic groups of central Mexico, particularly those groups who spoke the Nahuatl language and who dominated large parts of Mesoamerica from the 14th to 16th centuries. The Nahuatl words aztecatl [as'tekat͡ɬ] (singular)[2] and aztecah [as'tekaʔ] (plural)[2] mean "people from Aztlan",[3] a mythological place for the Nahuatl-speaking culture of the time, and later adopted as the word to define the Mexica people. Often the term "Aztec" refers exclusively to the Mexica people of Tenochtitlan (now the location of Mexico City), situated on an island in Lake Texcoco, who referred to themselves as Mexica Tenochca [me'ʃika te'not͡ʃka] or Cōlhuah Mexica [koːlwaʔ me'ʃika].
Sometimes the term also includes the inhabitants of Tenochtitlan's two principal allied city-states, the Acolhuas of Texcoco and the Tepanecs of Tlacopan, who together with the Mexica formed the Aztec Triple Alliance which controlled what is often known as "the Aztec Empire". In other contexts, Aztec may refer to all the various city states and their peoples, who shared large parts of their ethnic history and cultural traits with the Mexica, Acolhua and Tepanecs, and who often also used the Nahuatl language as a lingua franca. In this meaning it is possible to talk about an Aztec civilization including all the particular cultural patterns common for most of the peoples inhabiting Central Mexico in the late postclassic period.
From the 13th century, the Valley of Mexico was the heart of Aztec civilization: here the capital of the Aztec Triple Alliance, the city of Tenochtitlan, was built upon raised islets in Lake Texcoco. The Triple Alliance formed a tributary empire expanding its political hegemony far beyond the Valley of Mexico, conquering other city states throughout Mesoamerica. At its pinnacle, Aztec culture had rich and complex mythological and religious traditions, as well as reaching remarkable architectural and artistic accomplishments. In 1521 Hernán Cortés, along with a large number of Nahuatl speaking indigenous allies, conquered Tenochtitlan and defeated the Aztec Triple Alliance under the leadership of Hueyi Tlatoani Moctezuma II. Subsequently the Spanish founded the new settlement of Mexico City on the site of the ruined Aztec capital, from where they proceeded with the process of colonizing Central America.
Aztec culture and history is primarily known through archaeological evidence found in excavations such as that of the renowned Templo Mayor in Mexico City; from indigenous bark paper codices; from eyewitness accounts by Spanish conquistadors such as Hernán Cortés and Bernal Díaz del Castillo; and especially from 16th and 17th century descriptions of Aztec culture and history written by Spanish clergymen and literate Aztecs in the Spanish or Nahuatl language, such as the famous Florentine Codex compiled by the Franciscan monk Bernardino de Sahagún with the help of indigenous Aztec informants.

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The Aztecs

  1. 1. The AztecsThe Aztecs The Chichimec PeriodThe Chichimec Period Cultural InnovationsCultural Innovations Social/Political StructureSocial/Political Structure
  2. 2. The Chichimec PeriodThe Chichimec Period The Aztec originated from somewhere in northThe Aztec originated from somewhere in north or northwest Mexico.or northwest Mexico. At that time the Aztecs (who referred toAt that time the Aztecs (who referred to themselves as the Mexica or Tenochca) were athemselves as the Mexica or Tenochca) were a small, nomadic, Nahuatl-speaking aggregationsmall, nomadic, Nahuatl-speaking aggregation of tribal peoples living on the margins ofof tribal peoples living on the margins of civilized Mesoamerica.civilized Mesoamerica. Sometime in the 12th century they embarkedSometime in the 12th century they embarked on a period of wandering and in the 13thon a period of wandering and in the 13th century settled in the central basin of México.century settled in the central basin of México.
  3. 3. The Aztecs finally found refuge on smallThe Aztecs finally found refuge on small islands in Lake Texcoco where, in 1325,islands in Lake Texcoco where, in 1325, they founded the town of TENOCHTITLANthey founded the town of TENOCHTITLAN (modern-day Mexico City).(modern-day Mexico City). Other Chichimecs followed who wereOther Chichimecs followed who were more civilized but stole women andmore civilized but stole women and practiced sacrifice.practiced sacrifice. – brought knowledge of the Maya calenderbrought knowledge of the Maya calender system, cultivated crops with irrigation,system, cultivated crops with irrigation, constructed with stone.constructed with stone. The Chichimec PeriodThe Chichimec Period
  4. 4. Aztec Origin MythAztec Origin Myth Little is known of the earliest Aztecs, they did not keepLittle is known of the earliest Aztecs, they did not keep a written record. Their history was passed on by worda written record. Their history was passed on by word of mouth from one generation to the next. Legend hasof mouth from one generation to the next. Legend has it that they came from an Island called Aztlan, meaningit that they came from an Island called Aztlan, meaning White PlaceWhite Place -- Place of HeronsPlace of Herons.. There is one codex, theThere is one codex, the Tira de la Peregrinacion,Tira de la Peregrinacion, commonly called thecommonly called the Migration Scrolls.Migration Scrolls. The scrollsThe scrolls have the Aztecs leaving Aztlan, which was describedhave the Aztecs leaving Aztlan, which was described as an island in a lake with Chicomoztoc depicted asas an island in a lake with Chicomoztoc depicted as seven temples in the center of the island.seven temples in the center of the island.
  5. 5. The Aztecs believed Huitzilopochtli their war god was their protector,The Aztecs believed Huitzilopochtli their war god was their protector, now had them search for theirnow had them search for their promised land.promised land. The Aztecs straggled into the Valley of Mexico, led by their chieftainThe Aztecs straggled into the Valley of Mexico, led by their chieftain Tenoch. They were a poor, ragged people who survived on vermin,Tenoch. They were a poor, ragged people who survived on vermin, snakes, and stolen food. They were hated and rejected by all thesnakes, and stolen food. They were hated and rejected by all the surrounding inhabitants of the valley, for their barbarous andsurrounding inhabitants of the valley, for their barbarous and uncultured habits.uncultured habits. Huitzilopochtli told Tenoch to lead his people to a place of refuge onHuitzilopochtli told Tenoch to lead his people to a place of refuge on a swampy island in Lake Texcoco. When they reached theira swampy island in Lake Texcoco. When they reached their destination, they were to look for an eagle perched on a cactus,destination, they were to look for an eagle perched on a cactus, growing from a rock or cave surrounded by water. At that location,growing from a rock or cave surrounded by water. At that location, they were to build their city and honor Huitzilopochtli with humanthey were to build their city and honor Huitzilopochtli with human sacrifices. The city they built was called Tenochtitlán, the city ofsacrifices. The city they built was called Tenochtitlán, the city of Tenoch.Tenoch. Aztec Origin MythAztec Origin Myth
  6. 6. What is the meaning of the wordWhat is the meaning of the word Aztlan?Aztlan? Aztlan is the mythical place of origin of the Aztec peoples.Aztlan is the mythical place of origin of the Aztec peoples. In their language (Nahuatl), the roots of Aztlan are the two words:In their language (Nahuatl), the roots of Aztlan are the two words: aztatl tlan(tli) meaning "heron" and "place of," respectively. 'Tlantli'aztatl tlan(tli) meaning "heron" and "place of," respectively. 'Tlantli' proper means tooth, and as a characteristic of a good tooth is that itproper means tooth, and as a characteristic of a good tooth is that it is firmly rooted in place, and does not move, the prefix of this wordis firmly rooted in place, and does not move, the prefix of this word is commonly used in Nahuatl to denote settlements, or placeis commonly used in Nahuatl to denote settlements, or place names, e.g. Mazatlan (place of deer), Papalotlan (place ofnames, e.g. Mazatlan (place of deer), Papalotlan (place of butterflies) or Tepoztlan (place of metal).butterflies) or Tepoztlan (place of metal). The Nahuatl language is often said to include three levels ofThe Nahuatl language is often said to include three levels of meaning for its words or expressions: literal, syncretic andmeaning for its words or expressions: literal, syncretic and connotative. The connotative meaning of Aztlan, due to theconnotative. The connotative meaning of Aztlan, due to the plumage of herons, is "Place of Whiteness." The mythicalplumage of herons, is "Place of Whiteness." The mythical descriptions of Aztlan would have it to be an island. You woulddescriptions of Aztlan would have it to be an island. You would replace -tlan with -tecatl to identify a resident or person from thereplace -tlan with -tecatl to identify a resident or person from the given place. So, for the examples above, we have that people fromgiven place. So, for the examples above, we have that people from Mazatlan would be Mazatecatl, someone from Tepoztlan aMazatlan would be Mazatecatl, someone from Tepoztlan a Tepoztecatl, and someone from Aztlan an Aztecatl.Tepoztecatl, and someone from Aztlan an Aztecatl.
  7. 7. Mixeca/AztecMixeca/Aztec Technically squatted in the area of Tenochtitlan andTechnically squatted in the area of Tenochtitlan and were known as the Mixeca but today Aztecs is morewere known as the Mixeca but today Aztecs is more common.common. The Aztecs remain the most extensively documentedThe Aztecs remain the most extensively documented of all Amerindian civilizations at the time of Europeanof all Amerindian civilizations at the time of European contact in the 16th century.contact in the 16th century. Spanish friars, soldiers, and historians and scholarsSpanish friars, soldiers, and historians and scholars of Indian or mixed descent left invaluable records ofof Indian or mixed descent left invaluable records of all aspects of life. These ethnohistoric sources, linkedall aspects of life. These ethnohistoric sources, linked to modern archaeological inquiries and studies ofto modern archaeological inquiries and studies of ethnologists, linguists, historians, and art historians,ethnologists, linguists, historians, and art historians, portray the formation and flourishing of a complexportray the formation and flourishing of a complex imperial state.imperial state.
  8. 8. Basin of MexicoBasin of Mexico Chain of interconnected lakes, 3-6, butChain of interconnected lakes, 3-6, but the Aztecs talked about three-Chalco,the Aztecs talked about three-Chalco, Texcoco, and Xaltocan.Texcoco, and Xaltocan. – Lake TexcocoLake Texcoco deepest and water flowed from it to other lakesdeepest and water flowed from it to other lakes the Basin is about 3,000 sq miles and aboutthe Basin is about 3,000 sq miles and about 15% of that is covered by water.15% of that is covered by water. Population estimates at aroundPopulation estimates at around A.D.1519 are between 1 to 1.2 million.A.D.1519 are between 1 to 1.2 million.
  9. 9. Aztec EmpireAztec Empire
  10. 10. TenochtitlanTenochtitlan
  11. 11. How were they all fed?How were they all fed? Used the Chinampas (floating gardens) forUsed the Chinampas (floating gardens) for agriculture.agriculture. – 25,000 acres of chinampas at the time of contact.25,000 acres of chinampas at the time of contact. – gardens never actually floated, but were createdgardens never actually floated, but were created by making use of the vegetaion in the swamps.by making use of the vegetaion in the swamps. – Floating water plants were used to build upFloating water plants were used to build up gardens and then were dragged onto shore forgardens and then were dragged onto shore for chinampas.chinampas. – They became anchored to the native cypress.They became anchored to the native cypress. – Lake mud was piled on and canals were built.Lake mud was piled on and canals were built.
  12. 12. ChinampasChinampas However, although chinampas were veryHowever, although chinampas were very productive, the number of people living inproductive, the number of people living in the area at the time of contact could notthe area at the time of contact could not keep up with subsistence and surplus foodkeep up with subsistence and surplus food demands.demands. These marsh plots also brought in birdsThese marsh plots also brought in birds and fish that could be gathered while theyand fish that could be gathered while they were working.were working.
  13. 13. ChinampasChinampas Ancient Aztecs tending to chinampas http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/aztec-society.htm
  14. 14. Cultural Innovations:Cultural Innovations: Trade, Economics, Market SystemTrade, Economics, Market System Part of inter-related regions whichPart of inter-related regions which consisted of Morelos to the south, Pueblaconsisted of Morelos to the south, Puebla to the east, Mezquital to the north, andto the east, Mezquital to the north, and Toluca to the west.Toluca to the west. – although many crops the same, some areasalthough many crops the same, some areas had their specialty crops.had their specialty crops. – tropical fruits, cotton, cacao from Morelos,tropical fruits, cotton, cacao from Morelos, beans from Puebla.beans from Puebla. – flowers were also a big part of the economyflowers were also a big part of the economy because one of the great pleasures was ofbecause one of the great pleasures was of the smelling of flowers.the smelling of flowers.
  15. 15. Aztec Market (Tlateloco)Aztec Market (Tlateloco) Market days were held once each five days, fourMarket days were held once each five days, four times each month. Sometimes daily in largertimes each month. Sometimes daily in larger towns.towns. – reflected community craft specializations as well asreflected community craft specializations as well as imported goods.imported goods. – also slaves were traded, and dogs for food (400 on aalso slaves were traded, and dogs for food (400 on a slow day).slow day). Bernal Diaz de Castillo says that he didn’t evenBernal Diaz de Castillo says that he didn’t even have time to list how many things were offeredhave time to list how many things were offered one day at the market of Tlateloco.one day at the market of Tlateloco. – commodities and goods exchanged by barter.commodities and goods exchanged by barter.
  16. 16. Cultural InnovationsCultural Innovations WritingWriting – Nahuatl language spoken at conquest, livingNahuatl language spoken at conquest, living language today.language today. – Many codices and glyphs to describe lifeways ofMany codices and glyphs to describe lifeways of Aztecs, as well as Spanish accounts.Aztecs, as well as Spanish accounts. Several Significant Codices:Several Significant Codices: – Codex BorbonicusCodex Borbonicus – Florentine Codex – Codex Mendoza
  17. 17. Codex BorbonicusCodex Borbonicus A scene from the Codex Borbonicus, which shows the gods Tlachitonátiuh and Xolotl, while on the right are the 8 to 13 days of the sixteenth series of the ritual series. http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/aztecs4.htm
  18. 18. Florentine CodexFlorentine Codex Human sacrifice http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/florentine- codex.htm
  19. 19. Codex MendozaCodex Mendoza Tribute http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/codex-mendoza.htm
  20. 20. Cultural InnovationsCultural Innovations ArtArt – Stone carving to communicate ideas.Stone carving to communicate ideas. – Free-standing figures of Aztec deities.Free-standing figures of Aztec deities. – Aztec Calender stone.Aztec Calender stone. – Atlantean figures and chocmoolsAtlantean figures and chocmools MetallurgyMetallurgy – acquired from Maya.acquired from Maya. – Mostly gold, silver.Mostly gold, silver.
  21. 21. ArtArt http://www.mesoweb.com/features/jpl/99.html Obsidian vessel carvedObsidian vessel carved in the shape of ain the shape of a monkeymonkey Polychrome terracota plaque with molded and apliquéd sculpture of a human face Stone box with representations of corn cobs
  22. 22. JewelryJewelry Necklaces found in the Great Temple at Tenochtitlan http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/aztec-jewelry.htm
  23. 23. MasksMasks http://www.rose-hulman.edu/~delacova/aztec-masks.htm
  24. 24. Social StructureSocial Structure Basic unit of social organizationBasic unit of social organization – calpulli (clan)calpulli (clan) – not all lineages within the clan were equal.not all lineages within the clan were equal. Membership by birth.Membership by birth. – families traced their descent through fathers,families traced their descent through fathers, which is a lineage, and these lineages makewhich is a lineage, and these lineages make up a calpulli.up a calpulli. – marry within the calpulli.marry within the calpulli. – one lineage provides leader of that calpule.one lineage provides leader of that calpule.
  25. 25. Four principle social categories:Four principle social categories: Pipiltin-Pipiltin- – ruler of the city state and his relatives.ruler of the city state and his relatives. – only ones to own their own landonly ones to own their own land Macehualtin-commoner clan.Macehualtin-commoner clan. – serfs who worked others land.serfs who worked others land. Pochtea-merchant clan.Pochtea-merchant clan. – owned communal land.owned communal land. Tlacotin-slaves.Tlacotin-slaves. – no land, no rights.no land, no rights. – reversible status.reversible status.
  26. 26. Political OrganizationPolitical Organization Divine King or ruler of AztecDivine King or ruler of Aztec Each city (other than Tenochtitlan) ruled by a petty-Each city (other than Tenochtitlan) ruled by a petty- king selected from the pipiltin.king selected from the pipiltin. Dual leadership-military and religiousDual leadership-military and religious – supreme leader chosen from special lineage, with brothersupreme leader chosen from special lineage, with brother succeeding brother.succeeding brother. – court which ruled over military, justice, treasury, andcourt which ruled over military, justice, treasury, and commerce.commerce. Moctezuma II http://www.rose- hulman.edu/~delacova/florentin e-codex.htm
  27. 27. Judicial branchJudicial branch Both pipitlin and commoners chosen.Both pipitlin and commoners chosen. higher and lower courts.higher and lower courts. – commoners went to lower court (tecalli).commoners went to lower court (tecalli). – higher court for upper class (tlacxitlan).higher court for upper class (tlacxitlan). Prisoners kept in wooden cages, sentencingPrisoners kept in wooden cages, sentencing could be death, mutilation or slavery.could be death, mutilation or slavery. * Even elite tried-the sister of Motecuhzoma II* Even elite tried-the sister of Motecuhzoma II was tried by her husband for extramarital affairswas tried by her husband for extramarital affairs and she and her lovers were put to death.and she and her lovers were put to death.
  28. 28. Rulers: Post 14Rulers: Post 14thth CC 1Acamapichtli A.D.1376-13911Acamapichtli A.D.1376-1391 -married Ilancueil (“Toltec Princess”)-married Ilancueil (“Toltec Princess”) 2Huitzilihuitl 1391-14152Huitzilihuitl 1391-1415 3Chimalpopocoa 1415-14263Chimalpopocoa 1415-1426 4Itzcoatl 1426-14404Itzcoatl 1426-1440 5Moctezuma I 1440-14695Moctezuma I 1440-1469 Atotozli = TezozomocAtotozli = Tezozomoc 6Axayacatl 1469-1481 7Tizoc 1481-1486 8Ahuizotl 1486-15026Axayacatl 1469-1481 7Tizoc 1481-1486 8Ahuizotl 1486-1502 10Cuitlahuac152010Cuitlahuac1520 9Moctezuma II 1502-15209Moctezuma II 1502-1520 11Cuauhtemoc 1520-152511Cuauhtemoc 1520-1525
  29. 29. Acamapichtli 1372-1391Acamapichtli 1372-1391 Aztec dynasty emerges ca. 1371Aztec dynasty emerges ca. 1371 name means "handful of reeds"name means "handful of reeds" was son of Mexica noble and Culhua womanwas son of Mexica noble and Culhua woman dynasty from which he came had links todynasty from which he came had links to Acolhua provided link to Toltec past: wife was ofAcolhua provided link to Toltec past: wife was of Culhua nobilityCulhua nobility conquests of Xochimilco and Cuernavacaconquests of Xochimilco and Cuernavaca beginning of conflict with Chalcobeginning of conflict with Chalco building up city and constructing houses,building up city and constructing houses, chinampas, and canalschinampas, and canals died ca. 1391, after reign of ca. 19 yearsdied ca. 1391, after reign of ca. 19 years
  30. 30. Huitzilihuitl 1391-1415Huitzilihuitl 1391-1415 "Humming Bird's Feather""Humming Bird's Feather" – first wife was from Tacubafirst wife was from Tacuba – second wife was a Tepanec princess, granddaughtersecond wife was a Tepanec princess, granddaughter of Tezozomoc from Azcapotzalcoof Tezozomoc from Azcapotzalco resulted in favorable treatment from Tezozomocresulted in favorable treatment from Tezozomoc after birth of son Chimalpopoca, delegation came fromafter birth of son Chimalpopoca, delegation came from AzcapotzalcoAzcapotzalco – third wife a: mother of Tlacaelelthird wife a: mother of Tlacaelel – fourth wife was from Cuernavacafourth wife was from Cuernavaca mother of Moctezuma Ilhuicaminamother of Moctezuma Ilhuicamina – died ca. 1415died ca. 1415
  31. 31. Chimalpopoca 1415-1426Chimalpopoca 1415-1426 "Smoking Shield""Smoking Shield" – half Tepanechalf Tepanec – oversaw war with Texcocooversaw war with Texcoco – in Texcoco, authority was challenged byin Texcoco, authority was challenged by IxtlilxochitlIxtlilxochitl – asserted right to be called "Lord of theasserted right to be called "Lord of the Chichimecs"Chichimecs"
  32. 32. Itzcoatl 1426-1440Itzcoatl 1426-1440 Chimalpopoca succeeded by uncle Itzcoatl (ObsidianChimalpopoca succeeded by uncle Itzcoatl (Obsidian Serpent)Serpent) Itzcoatl acceded in 1426 at the age of 46Itzcoatl acceded in 1426 at the age of 46 – may have had Chimalpopoca killedmay have had Chimalpopoca killed – chief advisor was nephew Tlacaelel, son of Huitzilihuitlchief advisor was nephew Tlacaelel, son of Huitzilihuitl – younger brother of Moctezuma Iyounger brother of Moctezuma I – assumed title of Cihuacoatl (Woman Snake)assumed title of Cihuacoatl (Woman Snake) – chief reformer of Aztec statechief reformer of Aztec state destroyed pre-Aztec books and recordsdestroyed pre-Aztec books and records promoted view of Aztecs as heirs to Toltec traditionpromoted view of Aztecs as heirs to Toltec tradition reign characterized by troubles with Tepanecsreign characterized by troubles with Tepanecs latter demanded signs of submissionlatter demanded signs of submission war broke out between Mexica and Tepanecs upon death of Itzcoatlwar broke out between Mexica and Tepanecs upon death of Itzcoatl
  33. 33. Motecuhzoma IlhuicaminaMotecuhzoma Ilhuicamina 1440-14681440-1468 "Heaven Shooter“"Heaven Shooter“ began construction of Templo Mayor at Tenochtitlanbegan construction of Templo Mayor at Tenochtitlan first conquest was with region of Chalcafirst conquest was with region of Chalca Empire expansionEmpire expansion – campaign towards Oaxaca begun in 1458campaign towards Oaxaca begun in 1458 – pretense was killing of merchantspretense was killing of merchants – conquered kingdom of Atonalconquered kingdom of Atonal A catastrophic famine of 1450-1451 occurred and the practice ofA catastrophic famine of 1450-1451 occurred and the practice of human sacrifice was propelled into a high gear in ever increasinghuman sacrifice was propelled into a high gear in ever increasing numbers. People sold themselves for a few ears of corn to keepnumbers. People sold themselves for a few ears of corn to keep from starving.from starving. – drive to Gulf Coastdrive to Gulf Coast fertile Tototac lands sought as protection against faminefertile Tototac lands sought as protection against famine Tlaxcalans neglected to come to assistance of Gulf Coast peoplesTlaxcalans neglected to come to assistance of Gulf Coast peoples common people denounced their rulerscommon people denounced their rulers Huaxtecs conquered nextHuaxtecs conquered next
  34. 34. AXAYACATL 1469-1481AXAYACATL 1469-1481 Water Mask, Face of Water, Son of Moctezuma I.Water Mask, Face of Water, Son of Moctezuma I. At 19 years of age this leader was installed as the Great Speaker ofAt 19 years of age this leader was installed as the Great Speaker of the Aztec faith and army. He proved himself a great warrior andthe Aztec faith and army. He proved himself a great warrior and military strategist and expanded the Aztec empire.military strategist and expanded the Aztec empire. His most famous military campaign was in subduing a rebellion fromHis most famous military campaign was in subduing a rebellion from close neighbor and sister city next to Tenochtitlan, Tlatelolco inclose neighbor and sister city next to Tenochtitlan, Tlatelolco in 1473.1473. One of the most colorful stories in Aztec history has Axayacatl inOne of the most colorful stories in Aztec history has Axayacatl in hand to hand combat atop the great pyramid with the leader ofhand to hand combat atop the great pyramid with the leader of Tlatelolco, Moquihuix, with the latter being thrown down the steps ofTlatelolco, Moquihuix, with the latter being thrown down the steps of the temple. Conquered Tlatelolco(*38) on trumped up phonythe temple. Conquered Tlatelolco(*38) on trumped up phony charges and successfully substituted a strong military central controlcharges and successfully substituted a strong military central control in the region.in the region. Axayacatl lost a leg in one of his many battles. As a result ofAxayacatl lost a leg in one of his many battles. As a result of Axayacatl and his concentration of cementing his power base heAxayacatl and his concentration of cementing his power base he was able to extend total dominance over the Valley of Mexico for thewas able to extend total dominance over the Valley of Mexico for the Aztec Empire.Aztec Empire.
  35. 35. TIZOC 1481-1486TIZOC 1481-1486 ““He Has Bled People, Jewell of the Sun”, was theHe Has Bled People, Jewell of the Sun”, was the brother of Axayacatl.brother of Axayacatl. Tizoc's name glyph depicted a pierced leg with cactusTizoc's name glyph depicted a pierced leg with cactus spines, indicating his great devotion to self sacrifice.spines, indicating his great devotion to self sacrifice. Was proven a bad military leader and was removed fromWas proven a bad military leader and was removed from office by poison.office by poison. The empire actually began to shrink under this ruler asThe empire actually began to shrink under this ruler as his lack of administration skills allowed almost constanthis lack of administration skills allowed almost constant rebellion.rebellion. Was calledWas called "Bloodstained Leg""Bloodstained Leg". Though his armies were. Though his armies were successful, over one hundred thousand prisoners taken,successful, over one hundred thousand prisoners taken, he was considered a coward.he was considered a coward.
  36. 36. AHUITZOTL 1486-1502AHUITZOTL 1486-1502 ““Water Dog, Otter”. Was the third son of Moctezuma I.Water Dog, Otter”. Was the third son of Moctezuma I. Said to be rough and fearless, he lived and slept with hisSaid to be rough and fearless, he lived and slept with his army, one of the greatest warrior kings.army, one of the greatest warrior kings. – Greatly expanded the Aztec tribute empire during his reign.Greatly expanded the Aztec tribute empire during his reign. Conquered the valley of Oaxaca and the Pacific coast toConquered the valley of Oaxaca and the Pacific coast to Guatemala.Guatemala. Imposed strong bureaucratic control over the AztecImposed strong bureaucratic control over the Aztec empire.empire. The great temple of Tenochtitlan, dedicated in 1487 withThe great temple of Tenochtitlan, dedicated in 1487 with the sacrifice of 20,000 victims occurred during his reign.the sacrifice of 20,000 victims occurred during his reign. – Construction of an aqueduct to bring fresh water to the capital wasConstruction of an aqueduct to bring fresh water to the capital was begun.begun. Great uncle to Moctezuma II.Great uncle to Moctezuma II. Ahuitzotl is reported to have died after striking his headAhuitzotl is reported to have died after striking his head while escaping rising waters in his garden area as a resultwhile escaping rising waters in his garden area as a result of a dike breaking. Physicians removed parts of hisof a dike breaking. Physicians removed parts of his smashed skull and the king died probably foam a subduralsmashed skull and the king died probably foam a subdural
  37. 37. MOCTEZUMA II 1502-1520MOCTEZUMA II 1502-1520 ““Our Angry Looking God, He Who Frowned Like A Lord”Our Angry Looking God, He Who Frowned Like A Lord” Axayacatl's eldest son was the leading candidate forAxayacatl's eldest son was the leading candidate for ascending to the throne, however, he was consideredascending to the throne, however, he was considered too flamboyant and Moctezuma was chosen.too flamboyant and Moctezuma was chosen. Moctezuma assumed the throne on May 24, 1503.Moctezuma assumed the throne on May 24, 1503. The Aztec people reached their finest hour under hisThe Aztec people reached their finest hour under his reign. Was the son of Axayacatl (Ruler 6).reign. Was the son of Axayacatl (Ruler 6). Originally trained to be a high priest, but proved himselfOriginally trained to be a high priest, but proved himself valiantly on the field of battle.valiantly on the field of battle. Very much a philosopher king. During the reign of thisVery much a philosopher king. During the reign of this leader the Mexica were able to sustain several majorleader the Mexica were able to sustain several major military campaigns at one time which greatly added tomilitary campaigns at one time which greatly added to the power base of the empire.the power base of the empire. Killed while a captive of Cortes.Killed while a captive of Cortes.
  38. 38. Moctezuma II
  39. 39. Moctezuma II:Moctezuma II: Feathered HeadressFeathered Headress
  40. 40. Moctezuma II and CortesMoctezuma II and Cortes His priestly training, particularly in the old ToltecHis priestly training, particularly in the old Toltec traditions, was his downfall as he believed the return oftraditions, was his downfall as he believed the return of Quetzalcoatl to be incarnated in Cortes, it paralyzed himQuetzalcoatl to be incarnated in Cortes, it paralyzed him and his vast armies until it was too late for the Aztecs.and his vast armies until it was too late for the Aztecs. He believed it was his destiny to preside over the AztecsHe believed it was his destiny to preside over the Aztecs while a total destruction of the Mexica civilizationwhile a total destruction of the Mexica civilization occurred.occurred. Moctezuma was considered a skilled statesman andMoctezuma was considered a skilled statesman and many references by the Conquistadors to theirmany references by the Conquistadors to their admiration for him.admiration for him. While a captive of Cortes he lost his stature among theWhile a captive of Cortes he lost his stature among the general population of Tenochtitlan and was hit in thegeneral population of Tenochtitlan and was hit in the head by a stone thrown by his former subjects and diedhead by a stone thrown by his former subjects and died while a captive of Corteswhile a captive of Cortes
  41. 41. CUITLAHUAC 1520CUITLAHUAC 1520 Brief interim ruler between MotecuhzomaBrief interim ruler between Motecuhzoma II and Cuauhtemoc.II and Cuauhtemoc. Was the lord of Ixtapapapa.Was the lord of Ixtapapapa. Died of the smallpox brought to Mexico byDied of the smallpox brought to Mexico by a soldier with Narvaez.a soldier with Narvaez. Was nephew to Moctezuma II.Was nephew to Moctezuma II.
  42. 42. CUAUHTEMOC 1520-1521CUAUHTEMOC 1520-1521 ““DESCENDING EAGLE”, also known asDESCENDING EAGLE”, also known as "Prince Falling"Prince Falling Eagle"Eagle".. Defended Tenochtitlan against Cortes to the last man.Defended Tenochtitlan against Cortes to the last man. Was captured and eventually hung by Colonial troops.Was captured and eventually hung by Colonial troops. Cuauhtemoc was a skilled military leader.Cuauhtemoc was a skilled military leader. Another nephew of Motecuhzoma and was 18 years oldAnother nephew of Motecuhzoma and was 18 years old at the time he was chosen to be the Aztec leader.at the time he was chosen to be the Aztec leader. Was immediately wed to one of Moctezuma's daughters,Was immediately wed to one of Moctezuma's daughters, Tecuichpo, who would later become a Christian andTecuichpo, who would later become a Christian and have four Spanish husbands.have four Spanish husbands. He was a symbol of valor to the Mexica and representedHe was a symbol of valor to the Mexica and represented their spirit of nationalism and pride. Cuauhtemoc's reign,their spirit of nationalism and pride. Cuauhtemoc's reign, although short, was eventful and envied much respectalthough short, was eventful and envied much respect from the Spanish Conquistadors and Cortes in particular.from the Spanish Conquistadors and Cortes in particular.

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