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The Aztec Account of the Spanish Conquest of Mexico
 
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Join date : 2009-05-11
Location : Central Oklahoma

PostSubject: Introduction   Tue Jun 30, 2009 9:55 am

When Motecuhzoma heard the messengers' report, with its description of strange animals and other marvels, his thoughts were even more disturbed. Sahagun's informants tell us how he sent out his magicians and warlocks in the hope that they could harm the Spaniards with their magic, or at least prevent them from approaching Tenochtitlan. In his uncertainty about the nature of the strangers-he still thought they might be gods-he also sent out captives to be sacrificed in their presence. The informants give us a vivid account of the Spaniards' reactions to this rite.

The magicians failed completely in their attempts either to harm the Spaniards or to drive them away. The messengers reported all this to Motecuhzoma in Tenochtitlan. Both he and his people lived through days of intense fear, because it was now certain that the "gods" intended to march on the Aztec capital.The informants offer what could almost be called a psychological portrait of Motecuhzoma as he struggled with his fears and uncertainties. Finally we see how the grand tlatoani (king) resigned himself and waited for the inevitable.

The texts in this chapter are from the Codex Florentino.
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