The Aztec Indians Essay Research Paper The

The Aztec Indians Essay, Research Paper

The Aztec Indians, who are known for their

domination of southern and central Mexico, ruled between

the 14th and 16th centuries. Their name is derived from

Azatlan, the homeland of the north. The Aztecs also call

themselves Mexica and there language came from the

Nahuatlan branch of the Uto-Aztecan family. The Aztecs

were formed after the Toltec civilization occurred when

hundreds of civilians came towards Lake texcoco. Late

families were unfortunate and were forced to go to the

swamp lands. In the swamp lands there was only one piece

of land to farm on and it was totally surrounded by more

marshes . The Aztec families some how converted these

disadvantages to a might empire known as they Aztec

Empire. People say the empire was partially formed by a

deeply believed legend. As the the legend went it said that

Aztec people would create a empire on in a swampy place

where they would see an eagle eating a snake while perched

on a cactus which is growing out of a rock in the

swamplands. This is what priests claimed they saw while

entering the new land. By the year 1325 Their capital city

was finished. They called it Tenochtitlan. In the the capital

city aqueducts (piping) were constructed, bridges were built,

and chinapas were made. Chinapas were little islands

formed by pilled up mud. On these chinapas Aztecs grew

corn, beans, chili peppers, squash, tomatoes, and tobacco.

Tenochtitlan (the capital city) was covered in giant religious

statues in order to pay their respects to the gods. In the

Aztec religion numerous gods controlled an Aztec?s daily

life. Some of these gods include: Uitzilpochtli (the sun god),

Coyolxauhqui (the moon goddess), Tlaloc (the rain god),

and Quetzalcoatl (the inventor of the calendar and writing).

Another part of the Aztec religion was human sacrifices. For

their sacrifices the priest would lay the man or woman over a

convex (rounded) stone, then he would take a sharp knife

and cut the victims heart out. They did this because they

believed that good gods could prevent bad gods from doing

evil things and they also believed that good gods got their

strength from human blood and hearts so they had sacrifices

in order to keep their gods strong. For major rituals warriors

were sacrificed, for the warrior this was one of the greatest

honors and for minor rituals prisoners were used. In an

Aztec marriage the grooms shirt is tied to the brides dress in

order to express there bonding and after the wedding incents

were burned for 4 days before proceeding with the

marriage. In 1519 Hernando Cortes, a Spanish explorer, led

over 500 men into Aztec territory to search for gold. Aztecs

thought he was a representative for a certain white skinned

god so they respected him. It all changed when the Aztecs

saw that Hernando was melting down their golden statues

and shipping them back to Spain. The Aztecs decided to

attack Hernando and his men. The Aztecs were successful

and drove the Spanish away. In 1520 the Spanish attacked

the Aztec?s capital city and destroyed their civilization. That

was the end of the Aztec?s mighty empire had built so long

ago. Work Cited 1) ?Aztec Indians?. Young Students

Learning Library. 1993 2) Encarta ?96. CD-ROM. U.S.

Microsoft, 1996 .


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