Essay Colonization Across the Globe

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Colonization Across the Globe After Christopher Columbus landed in the West Indies in 1492, Spain and Portugal started disputing areas of influence on the South American continent. The dispute was eventually settled by the Pope (Alexander VI), who in 1493, drew up defined areas of influence for the two nations with the idea of spreading Christianity to the natives in those territories. In time the Portuguese territory became known as Brazil, hence the working language of that country to this day is Portuguese, while most of the rest of the continent speaks Spanish. On 1 August 1498, during his third voyage, Columbus finally sighted the South American mainland for the first time. The next white explorer to reach the continent was the…show more content…
The Aztecs were by all accounts cruel masters over other local tribes, with the result that some of the subjected peoples actually welcomed the arrival of the Spanish. A few of these tribes would physically help the Spanish invaders against the Aztecs. The Aztec religion was one of the reasons why there was so much resentment amongst the Amerind tribes: it demanded daily human sacrifice and most of the victims for this sacrifice were seized from surrounding Amerind tribes by the Aztecs. The Aztec religion also played a major role in destabilizing Aztec resistance to the white invaders: one of their gods was a plumed serpent named Quetzalcoatl, the god of wind and learning. According to Aztec legend, Quetzalcoatl had been tricked and disgraced by another god, Tezcatlipoca, and then travelled to the east. He vowed to return and destroy those who worshipped his enemies, accompanied by all powerful white-skinned gods. By the time of the Spanish assault in 1519, word of the arrival of the whites, with their plumed helmets, in the Caribbean Sea had travelled to the Aztecs, triggering the widely held superstition that an angry Quetzalcoatl and his white-skinned gods had indeed returned to exact revenge. This fear created confusion in the Aztec camp: should they attack the newcomers, who might be the avenging god, or should they try and appease them? This hesitancy to act was exploited by the Spanish invaders. In May 1521, the city of Tenochtitlan –
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