Cortez Quiz

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History 1301 - Video Quiz – The History Channel -
"Cortes: Conqueror of Mexico"

Instructor: Laura L. Ramirez Cruz

DVD Summary: Hernan Cortes was a Spanish Conquistador who led an expedition that caused the fall of the Aztec Empire and brought large portions of mainland Mexico under the rule of the King of Castile in the early 16th century. Cortes was a part of the generation of Spanish conquistadores that began the first phase of the Spanish colonization of the Americas.

1. When Hernan Cortes and his men first arrived in Mexico, they brought many advanced European weapons with them – muskets, cross-bows, cannons, and swords. They also used horses and attack dogs to conquer the indigenous people of Mexico. Why were these weapons so effective? Please explain.

2. Before making their way to Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztec Empire, Cortez and his men acquired translators in Mexico. These translators included Geronimo de Aguilar, a Spaniard taken hostage by the Mayans years before, and Dona Marina, aka “La Malinche,” a Mayan woman. Would Cortez have been as successful in his conquest without the assistance of these two individuals? Please explain.

3. When examining the conquest of the Aztec Empire and other indigenous tribes of Mexico, how effective was the spread of European disease, such as smallpox, in decimating the native population? Please explain.

4. Based on the information presented in Cortes: Conqueror of Mexico, do you believe that Hernan Cortes was “one of the greatest conquerors in world history?” Please explain.
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