Victors and Vanquished Essay

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Victors and Vanquished The history of the Western hemisphere is full of war and conquest. One of the most significant and defining of those conquests is the downfall of the Mexica/Aztec Empire. While there are many other events to choose from, this one stands out since it was one over one of the largest empires in Central America. It is also important to look at because of the immense cultural impact it had. The story of this takeover reads like a movie script, a small band of Spaniards single handedly takes down the most powerful empire in Central America. It was an epic battle, which unfortunately led to the destruction of a magnificent culture. As in any major historical event there are many underlying themes and storylines…show more content…
Among many things given to the Spaniards during the first few days of contact with the Aztecs was a large chest of gold figures along many other expensive things. This gesture of good will by the Aztecs would eventually lead to their downfall. The moment Cortez started receiving all these wonderful items his mind was most likely made up that he would do whatever it took to plunder every valuable item of the Aztec kingdom. As Cortez gradually moved deeper into Aztec territory he steadily received more gifts from the Aztecs and from other city-states that surrounded Tenochtitlan. Each time Montezuma requested for Cortez and the Spaniards to return back to the coast and conduct meetings and trade from there. However, with each gift received just gave Cortez additional incentive to move towards Tenochtitlan. By the time the Spaniards were in Tenochtitlan the Aztecs saw their true colors and it was too late. A second major theme, which played a very important role in this event, was the incredible advantage given to the Spanish due to their technology. The Aztecs were an advanced civilization with a large infrastructure, an organized system of government and many artistic and cultural achievements. However, they severely lacked many important advantages that were common in Europe at that time. The Aztecs had no iron tools or weapons,
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