. According to legend, the Mexica founded Tenochtitlan after leaving their homeland of Aztlan at the direction of their god, Huitzilopochtli. Yet, only a year later, Cortés would secure his place in history as the commander of the conquest of Mexico. Suddenly, among the sounds of worship, the screams of battle were heard and the drummer was abruptly silenced as a Spanish soldier sliced off his arms. The Fall of Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztec Empire, was a decisive event in the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire. Cuitlahuac probeerde te vluchten, maar werd gevangengenomen en opgehangen. In the interim, an epidemic of smallpox had broken out in the city and many people died, one of which was the ruler Cuitlahuac, who had been replaced by Cuauhtémoc. This grand gesture confirmed his intention, as he later declared, “that they would conquer and win the land, or die in the attempt”. Theory 1- Montezuma II believes that Cortes is a god There was an Aztec prophesy that stated that the god, Quetzalcoatl would arrive at the year 1519, the exact year that Hernan Cortes arrived at Tenochtitlan. You have successfully linked your account! Recommended to you based on your activity and what's popular • Feedback Letter, Hernán Cortés This excerpt from Cortés’ Second Letter, written to Charles V in 1519 and first publishedin 1522, is one of only two instances in Cortés’ letters to the King that explicitly mentions his A.The Spanish army became ill with smallpox. If you subscribe to BBC History Magazine Print or Digital Editions then you can unlock 10 years’ worth of archived history material fully searchable by Topic, Location, Period and Person. Are You Thinking of a Career in Secondary Schools? For Cortés's military conquest was only quasi–legal, and he needed to hold out the promise of a spectacular booty—like Tenochtitlan—to ensure the king's support. Months of tactical manoeuvring were ended by this confrontation, and his careful plans for a peaceful victory had been ruined. Hernán Cortés was a Spanish conquistador who explored Central America, overthrew Montezuma and his vast Aztec empire and won Mexico for the crown of Spain. Bringing gifts of gold which roused the Spaniards’ greed, the messengers brought word from the Aztec tlatoani (speaker) Moctecuhzoma Xocoyotzin, the powerful ruler who became known to history as Montezuma. . Trapping the unarmed Aztecs, the conquistadors slaughtered them mercilessly until, according to the Nahuatl (Aztec language) chronicles, “the blood of the warriors flowed like water”. Retreating to Tlaxcala, he marshalled his remaining forces and allies, not without difficulty, and determined to reverse their fortunes. . You're now subscribed to our newsletter. Her book Bonds of Blood: Gender, Lifecycle, and Sacrifice in Aztec Culture was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2008. There are apothecaries' shops, where prepared medicines, liquids, ointments, and plasters are sold; barbers' shops, where they wash and shave the head; and restaurateurs, that furnish food and drink at a certain price. 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