broken spears focus paper

Topics: Aztec, Smallpox, Hernán Cortés Pages: 4 (806 words) Published: May 3, 2014
The Broken Spears Focus paper

In The broken spears, author Miguel Leon-Portilla gives accounts from the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire in 1519. These accounts include several texts written by surviving indigenous people of the Aztec civilization; these perspectives truly shows the emotion, fear, and uncertainty the Aztec’s felt in depth during this time. With the accounts in our textbook and the broken spears, we are able to draw conclusions viewing both facts and experiences through this prevailing point in world history. 1492 was a turning point for the Spanish, Columbus’s successful settlements in the new world encouraged further expeditions to discover resources and spread Christianity abroad. As we learned last week the Columbus story has two sides; heroic for finding new land and recourses and evildoer for destroying an entire civilization. I found the overthrowing of the Aztec civilization very similar in context, when comparing the Columbian exchange in both texts the broken spears includes vivid imagery while Traditions & encounters is very factual in nature. Throughout the Broken spears there are numerous accounts of the Columbian exchange supported by the historical facts in Traditions and encounters. Diffusion of the Columbian exchange is evident in the broken spears starting in chapter two when Cortes arrived at the shore of Tenochtitlan where a macehual views the Spaniards boats. In the chapters following Motecuhzomas messengers come in contact with the Spaniards and there fire arms, animals, food, and advanced iron armor. The messengers explain the foreign technology and animals as, “a thing like a ball of stone comes out of its entrails: it comes out shooting sparks and raining fire”. “There deer carry them on their backs wherever they wish to go,” and; “towers or small mountains floating on the waves of the sea.”1 Traditions & encounters explain this as, “European peoples possessed powerful weapons, horses, and ships that provided...
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