Compare and contrast the Aztec civilization and the Mayan civilization.

2454 Words Apr 17th, 2004 10 Pages
The Aztecs civilization and the Mayan civilization where the most important civilizations from the new world that amazed many of the Europeans that came to conquer this wonderful rich land. The Europeans where amazed with the Aztec and Mayan culture, their ways of life, their geographical surroundings and their technology. The Europeans and historians today find that the Aztecs and the Mayans where similar in some ways of life like their culture, their technology, their religious events and at the same time they had their differences in their cultures.

The Aztec civilization dominated the valley of Mexico during the fifteen and the sixteen centuries. Their culture was seen as unethical to the Europeans that were in Aztec territory and
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At the very top of Aztec society was the Tlacatecuhtli or "chief men" that dominated all religious ceremonies and was the military leader of the Aztecs. Below him were religious offices that served as military generals.

The religion of the Aztecs was made up of mainly three gods: Huitzilopochtli, Tezcatlipoca and Quetzalcoatl. Below these three main gods were four creating gods. Below these four gods were many other gods, however the most important were Tlaloc, the rain god, Chalchihuitlicue, the god of growth and Xipe, the god of spring. The main thing that captures the attention of Aztec religion is their human sacrifice made to the different gods. Although human sacrifice was practiced around Mesoamerica, the Aztecs practiced human sacrifice in a large scale never seen before to date. The idea of human sacrifice was that Gods gave things to humans like food, rain, wealth, and other goods only if they were given human beings in return. The Aztecs believed that the goods liked best the living hearths of sacrificed captives. If the captive was a well skilled soldier and very brave then the Gods would return better goods to his people. This idea lead to wars were the Aztecs fought with other indians and capture their bravest men for sacrifice. As we can imagine,

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