Aztecs empire was a mighty empire

Throughout the long history of humanity, many mighty empires have been formed and then collapsed. No matter how mighty an empire was, but to the end, it was still inevitable the law of substitution of time. The Aztecs Empire is a typical example. As many people know;  It has grown most strongly in 1502 under the reign of Montezuma II. However; the Aztecs Empire was conquered by Hernando Cortés in 1592. Let’s find out about the timelines, the characters involved as well as the cause of this historic conquest.

The first is some information about the central character of this historical event – Hernando Cortés. Hernán Cortés, a young Spanish-born noble, came to Hispaniola in the West Indies in 1504 – 19 years old Hernan Cortés landed at Hispaniola – a Spanish colony now known as the Dominican Republic. At age 25, Cortés became a friend of well-known conquistador named Diego Velázquez de Cuellar. In 1511, he joined with Diego Velázquez in his conquest of Cuba and twice was elected mayor of Santiago, the capital of Hispaniola.

“Despite his success, Cortés was hungry for more power and greater thrills,” said Jessie Szalay. Cortés’s ambitions were fueled by stories of the great Aztecs empire. He felt certain this empire held all the riches of the new world. He’d seized this land had become as rich as a king he’d be known and respected by Spanish society (Dale Dye). His ambition was the basis for the conquest the Aztecs empire later.

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In 1518, Cortés was appointed captain general of a new Spanish expedition to the American mainland. This is the first step as well as the great opportunity in realizing his dream. However, Velázquez changed his mind and relieved Cortés’ of his command (Dale Dye).

Then, in February 18th, 1519, without official authorization, Cortez sailed west toward the island of Cozumel Mexico on the Yucatan coast with 11 ships in over 500 soldiers, 100 sailors, and 16 horses and established landing for Spanish expeditions. “Though Cortés wasn’t the first conquistador to land on these shores, he was the best armed.” (Dale Dye). Cortés used the most cutting-edge weaponry including cannons, matchlock musket and the crossbow. With these weapons at his disposal, Cortés met members of the Maya tribe.

Thanks to them, he found a Spaniard named Aguilar – the only surviving member of his expedition shipwreck and was taken captive by the Maya. So that he learned Yucatec Maya and he could translate from Maya into Spanish. After that, Cortés sailed around the Yucatan coast to the Mayan town of Potonchan around March 1519. Cortés won over the local Indians ( Staff). His victory was not only due to the cutting-edge weaponry but also to the secret weapons. There were Bullmastiff and Spaniard h,orses. He succeeded in making the natives shocked by things they had never seen before – dogs were trained to attack men, as well as they saw the conquistadors on horseback, were on divine being.

After winning, natives brought Cortez gifts of food gold, and women (Dale Dye). Among them is a woman named Malinche, she was baptized Marina – “who became his mistress and later bore him a son,” ( Staff). Marina knew both Maya and Aztecs – her language skills are so helpful to Cortés and his conquest. Getting Marina also means having an important tool of conquest – that is the ability to communicate. Through Aguilar, Cortés could speak to Marina, and through Marina, he could speak to Aztecs.

Next, in April 1519, the expedition went to the Mexican coast where he found Veracruz. There Cortés found Montezuma’s weakness (Montezuma was the emperor of the Aztecs), that is the dissatisfaction of natives when they were forced to pay taxes to the Aztecs empire and to Montezuma. Cortés realized that the resentment of the people can become an important factor in overthrowing the empire. The Montezuma has spies everywhere and he’d been tracking Cortez since the conquistador landed in Mexico. He sent gifts for Cortés with condition that Cortés stopped his march and not come to the capital Tenochtitlán. However, Cortés still came anyway. Cortés expressed his wish to tribute to the great Montezuma in person. In theory, Montezuma had nothing to worry about when he has hundreds of thousands of Aztec warriors while Cortés just had 500 men.

And yet, Montezuma feared Cortés because Cortés arrived during a season when the Aztecs calendar didn’t allow Montezuma to wage or even prepare for war. Because the Aztecs really went to war from early December until April during the dry season after the harvest. So, he hadn’t raised the armies retrained the armies, stored all the food, he wasn’t prepared for war. This was one of the reasons for the fall of the Aztecs empire. Moreover, coincidentally Cortés arrived during a sacred year on the Aztecs calendar with the same appearance as the description of an ancient prophecy about the Aztecs god called Quetzalcoatl, who was supposed to return on a ship from the East to take back and rule the land of the Aztecs. Therefore, Montezuma thought Cortés was a immortal god that he couldn’t be killed. That was a weapon even Cortés couldn’t have dreamed up.

While the conquest of Mexico is going well, Hernan Cortés encounters a problem – the munity from his own troops. They want to end the expedition at Veracuz and return to Cuba but there’s no turning back for Cortés. He kept his troops in line by burning his won ship so that the men couldn’t go back and Cortés could maintain his force in order to carry out the victory that he so desires.

On October 1519, his trained combined army – included 1000 Tlaxcaltec warriors joined his army – had gone to Cholula – the last major city between Cortes and Montezuma’s capital. In November 1519, Cortes and his conquistadors began the march into the valley of Mexico. Montezuma failed after many efforts to stop the Spanish juggernaut. Montezuma decided to receive Cortes as the representative of a great king as a diplomat rather than as an enemy. He allowed Cortez and his men to ride into the city of Tenochtitlán. “The Spaniards were greeted with great honor, and Cortés seized the opportunity, taking Montezuma hostage so that he might govern the empire through him. His mistress, Marina, was a great help in this endeavor and succeeded in convincing Montezuma to cooperate fully,” ( Staff).

At the end of April 1520, a new threat came to Cortés. A biggest and nastiest conquistador on the entire Spanish – Pánfilo Narvez – under orders from Velasquez was finding Cortés to relived Cortés’ of his command. Cortés decided to be the aggressor. In May 1524, Cortés left just 120 conquistadors to hold the city and raced Narvez with the rest of his army. After that, he defeated Narvaez, and Narvez’s army had joined Cortés. But back in the capital a new problem was developing. “The Aztecs were in the midst of a full rebellion. Cortés and his men fled the city,” said Jessie Szalay. Montezuma was killed by his own people in some way. It was the end of June 1520. Weary of a final assault, Cortés divided his troops and plotted several escape routes out of the city. “Known to the Spanish as La Noche Triste, or “the Night of Sadness,” many soldiers drowned in Lake Texcoco when the vessel carrying them and Aztec treasures hoarded by Cortés sank,” ( Staff). In May 1521, Cortés returned to Tenochtitlán for the final assault. “After a three-month siege the city fell. This victory marked the fall of the Aztec empire. Cuauhtámoc, Cuitláhuac’s successor as emperor, was taken prisoner and later executed, and Cortés became the ruler of a vast Mexican empire,” ( Staff).

In conclusion, through the fall of the Aztecs empire has shown that due to using politics, made alliances when needed and combined with the exploitation Montezuma’ weaknesses as well as had secret weapons – that gave Hernan Cortés an advantage in order to take down Montezuma and conquer Aztecs empire successfully.

Work cited

  1. Staff. “Aztecs Capital Falls to Cortés.”, A&E Television
  2. Networks, 2010,és.
  3. “The Conquerors: Hernando Cortés – Conqueror of Mexico.” Performance by Dale
  4. Dye, YouTube, Prince Corsica, 10 May. 2015,
  5. Editors. “Hernán Cortés.”, A&E Networks
  6. Television, 28 Apr. 2017,án-cortés-9258320
  7. Szalay, Jessie. “Hernán Cortés: Conqueror of the Aztecs.” LiveScience, Purch, 28 Sept. 2017,és-conqueror-of-the-Aztecss.html.

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Aztecs empire was a mighty empire
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