The Spanish Conquest of Mexico
Can the conquest of one city change the world? In 1519, two powerful empires - Spain and Mexica (Aztec) - were hungry for expansion in central Mexico. Led by emperor Motecuzoma II, the Mexica people had subdued their native enemies and now controlled a sprawling territory with the great city of Tenochtitl˜n at the center. Then the Spanish conquistador Hern˜n Cort‚s led an attack on the Mexica empire. Although the Spaniards had horses and guns, both unknown in the Americas, the Mexica outnumbered them five hundred to one. The Spaniards had no chance of success without the help of native allies unhappy with Mexica rule. What followed was a desperate war that lasted two years, cost thousands of lives, and left Tenochtitl˜n in ruins. In 1521 Cort‚s declared Mexico a colony of New Spain. In so doing, he laid the groundwork for the expansion of European power throughout the Americas and changed the world forever. The Spanish conquest of Mexico is one of world history s pivotal moments.
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accounts Aguilar attack Aztec back to Cuba battle became Bernal Díaz brigantines canal canoes Cantares Mexicanos captured causeway central Mexico Chalco Cholula Christian Christopher Columbus coast Columbus’s conquered conquest of Mexico Cortés’s Coyohuacan Cruz Cuauhtemoc Cuba Cuitlahuac defeat Díaz del Castillo Diego Velásquez Doña emperor encomienda enemies European expedition feathers fighting Florentine Codex fought Francisco López gods gold governor Hernán Cortés Hispaniola Huitzilopochtli hundred Ibid Isabella and Ferdinand island Juan de Grijalva killed King Charles Lake Texcoco land learned Leon-Portilla lives López de Gómara macehualtin Malinche Martín Maya Mexica army Mexica capital Mexica empire Mexica forces Mexica ruler Mexica warriors Mexico City military leader Motecuzoma Nahuatl Narváez Olid Orti palace Pedro de Alvarado priests Quetzalcoatl religion sacrifice Sahagún sails Sandoval sources Spain Spaniards Spanish conquest Spanish forces Spanish ships Spanish soldiers Spears Tenochtitlan Tentlil territory thousand Tlacopan Tlatelolco tlatoani Tlaxcalans Toltecs Totonacs town weapons Yucatán