the aztecs a policy of conquest aztec society, religion and life cortes and the spanish conquest

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  • The Aztecs A Policy Of Conquest Aztec Society, Religion and Life Cortes and the Spanish Conquest
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  • Who were the Aztecs? Nomadic people from the northwestern United States known as Aztlan, the Aztecs ventured to Mexico because of a vision Eagle on perched on a cactus, eating a snake A small island in Lake Texcoco will become the site of the Aztecs capital city Tenochtitlan in 1325 Surrounded by water, good soil and protective bridges
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  • A Policy of Conquest 1 st ruler Acamapichtli, Handful of Arrows 1376-1396 guided early building of Tenochtitlan and launched first conquest of the region Conquests sought to obtain natural resources needed for building materials, tools and prisoners for labor and sacrifices Policy of Conquest after conquering a region Aztecs allow local leaders to stay in power but expect heavy tribute payments Aztecs enter into a Triple Alliance with two powerful city- states, Texcoco and Tlacopan to expand into wealthy farmlands outside of the Valley of Mexico Aztec empire will expand over an area of 78,000 miles
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  • A Policy of Conquest Policy of Conquest led to constant threat of rebellion from concqueroed people 5 th ruler, Montezuma I, Angry Lord, Archer of The Sky, 1440-1469 Expanded the Aztec empire more than any other emperor through aggressive military expansion for economic gains Increased trade in cocoa, rubber, cotton, fruits, feathers, and seashells
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  • Tenochtitlan Tenochtitlan, was an island city covering an area of 5 miles surrounded by Lake Texcoco Canals were used as streets and people traveled by canoe Aqueducts brought fresh water and sewage was carried out in barges Palaces, a royal zoo, gardens, city fountains, and open market greeted vistors
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  • Tenochtitlan Chinampas were man made islands of plants, trees and compacted lake mud Served as floating agricultural gardens that provided food and a place to live for commoners Possessed a 365 day calendar used to keep track of seasonal events and a 260 day religious calendar that used names for dates
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  • Aztec Religion and Human Sacrifice Believed in over 1,6000 gods who controlled every aspect of Aztec life Gods had to be pleased to make sure that crops grew, rain came and sun would rise Believed gods had created the world through sacrifice and their blood
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  • Aztec Religion and Human Sacrifice Aztecs believed Huitzilopochtli, god of war demanded blood and human hearts for protection and aid Warriors taken on battlefields were treated as gods then sacrificed Hearts were removed and held high for approval and bodies were then thrown down steps
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  • Aztec Society Clothing determined social rank Nobles wore sandals and clothes of cotton Commoners wore clothes of coarse cloth Jewelry also was regulated to show social rank Education was highly valued but, wealthy received better than the common Aztec Diet consisted of beans, sweet potatoes, avocados, onions, tomatoes, turkey and dog Wealthy drank chocolatl and smoked tobacco During periods of poor harvest commoners turned to eating, worms, tadpoles, slugs, and other insects to survive
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  • Montezuma II 9 th ruler, Montezuma II, Angry Lord, The Younger, 1502-1520 successful military ruler but religiously superstitious Prophecies stated that Quetzalcoatl would return to rule over Aztecs Lived a life of luxury with a 100 wives in a palace considered an architectural marvel No one was allowed to look at him or touch
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  • The Last Rulers of Tenochtitlan 10 th ruler, Cuitlahuac ruled after Montezuma II and died 80 days later of smallpox 11 th ruler, Cuauhtemoc 1520-1525 Aztec empire ends with destruction of Tenochtitlan, and hanging of Cuauhtemoc by Spanish
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  • Aztec Family Life Land was farmed by a family groups Additional land was granted as families grew or if father was a great warrior Lazy families had land taken from them Parents and elders expected to be respected Children were punished by being pricked with a spine, beaten with a stick or forced to inhale burning chili peppers
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  • Aztec Warriors Military training began at age 12 After killing or capturing four opponents a warrior was given land and allowed to wear ceremonial clothes Best became professional soldiers called Eagle or Jaguar warriors who became part of nobility Warfare was based on taking prisoners and increasing land
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  • Cortes and the Spanish Conquest Hernan Cortes, Spanish conquistador who ventures to Mexico because of the gold and silver 1519 leads a military expedition to conqueror Aztec empire Cortes conquerors the Tlaxcalan army of 50,000 with 400 Spaniards Spanish steel, amour, and the horse win the day
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  • Cortes and the Spanish Conquest Aztec enemies join Cortes because it provides them the opportunity to defeat the Aztecs Spaniards make it clear that they are there for gold and seize Montezuma as a prisoner During negotiations for Montezumas freedom Aztec warriors stone the Spanish causing the death of Montezuma (strangled by Spanish?)
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  • Cortes and the Spanish Conquest La Noche Triste, Night of Sorrow for Spanish when they escaped Tenochtitlan but lost thousands of men 1519 smallpox and measles arrive with Spaniards and spreads reducing Aztec population December 1920 Cortes returns to attack Tenochtitlan with a navy and is victorious after 3 months Cortes used 13 warships and 200,000 canoes to attack the Aztecs 500,000 people die during this battle due to disease, polluted water or starvation The Aztec empire is no more


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