The Aztecs, the Conquistadors, and the Making of Mexican Culture

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McFarland, Jan 9, 2015 - History - 283 pages
Tracing events from the discovery of the New World through the fall of the Aztec empire in 1521, this book discusses the battles between the Spanish explorers and the Aztecs—battles that culminated in the ruin of a civilization. The first half of the work alternates between Aztec and Spanish history, discussing events and motivations on each side as the two cultures expanded toward one another on their way to inevitable conflict. Placing special emphasis on Aztec mythology and religious beliefs, the author explains how the Spanish exploited the Aztecs’ own cultural practices to insure the success of their invasion. The gold-and-glory engines driving the Spanish Crown and the actions of contemporary Spanish explorers such as Juan Ponce de León and Francisco Cordoba are examined. The concluding chapters give a thorough account of the struggle between Hernán Cortés and the Aztec ruler Montezuma, including the role of other indigenous tribes in the eventual downfall of the empire. The final chapter details the siege of the Aztec capital, Tenochtitlan, and summarizes the ultimate destruction of the Aztec civilization.
 

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Contents

Preface
1
One The Flight of the Feathered Serpent
5
Two The Spanish Invasion
21
Three The Flight from Aztlán
32
Four The Voyage of Francisco de Córdoba
48
Five A Stone Rising from the Water
57
Six The Grijalva Expedition
72
Seven The Road to Empire
84
Thirteen The Long Road to Tlaxcala
163
Fourteen The Massacre at Cholula
177
Fifteen Into the Realm of Enchantment
185
Sixteen The Reins of Power
202
Seventeen The Struggle for Control of Mexico
214
Eighteen The Rage of the Sun God
229
Nineteen La Noche Triste
237
Twenty A Foregone Conclusion
251

Eight In Search of Fame and Fortune
99
Nine Divine Dedication
109
Ten Tales of the Bearded Men
119
Eleven The Empire That Was Montezumas
133
Twelve Native Alliances
149
Chapter Notes
263
Bibliography
265
Index
269
Copyright

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About the author (2015)

After a long career in the banking industry, Peter O. Koch now runs a small online business. The author of several books, his research interests include American Indian cultures and the New World expeditions of the Spaniards. He lives in Bradenton, Florida.

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