The Aztec Account of the Spanish Conquest of Mexico

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The Aztec Account of the Spanish Conquest of Mexico
Miguel León-Portilla's book "The Broken Spears"

Introduction
Other resources:
Aztec Life
Mexica Culture
Mexica Medicine
Religion of the Modern Aztlan Movement
Religion of the Mexica & Bibliography
Major Deitites of the Mexica
Minor Deitites of the Mexica
Aztec Cannibalism: An Ecological Necessity?
Path of the Conquest

On November 8, 1519, the Spanish conquistadors first entered the great city of Mexico, the metropolis the Aztecs had built on a lake island. Don Hernando Cortes, who was accompanied by six hundred Spaniards and a great many native allies, at last could see for himself the temples and palaces about which he had heard so many marvels. The Spaniards arrived from the direction of Tlalpan, to the south of the city, passing across one of the wide causeways that connected the island with the mainland. When they reached a locality known as Xoloco, they were welcomed by the last of the Motecuhzomas, who had come out to meet them in the belief that the white men must be Quetzalcoatll and other gods, returning at last from across the waters now known as the Gulf of Mexico. Thus Cortes and his men entered the city, not only as guests, but also as gods coming home. It was the first direct encounter between one of the most extraordinary pre-Columbian cultures and the strangers who would eventually destroy it. Cortes landed on the coast at Veracruz on Good Friday, April 22, 1519; the Aztec capital surrendered to him on August 13, 1521. The events that took place between these two dates have been recounted in a number of chronicles and other writings, of which the best known are the letters Cortes wrote to King Charles V and the True History of the Conquest of Mexico by Bernal Diaz del Castillo. These two works, along with a few others also written by Spaniards, until now have been almost the only basis on which historians have judged the conquest of one of the greatest...
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