Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire
The Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire was one of the most significant events in the Spanish colonization of the Americas. Many of those on the Cortés expedition of 1519 had never seen combat before, in fact, Cortés had never commanded men in battle before. However, there was a generation of Spaniards who participated in expeditions in the Caribbean and Tierra Firme, learning strategy. The Spanish conquest of Mexico had antecedents with established practices, in their advance, the allies were tricked and ambushed several times by the people they encountered. When Cortés left Tenochtitlan to return to the coast and deal with the expedition of Pánfilo de Narváez, Alvarado allowed a significant Aztec feast to be celebrated in Tenochtitlan and on the pattern of the earlier massacre in Cholula, closed off the square and massacred the celebrating Aztec noblemen. The biography of Cortés by Francisco López de Gómara contains a description of the massacre, the Alvarado massacre at the Main Temple of Tenochtitlan precipitated rebellion by the population of the city.
When the captured emperor Motecuhzoma II, now seen as a puppet of the invading Spaniards, attempted to calm the outraged populace. Cortés had returned to Tenochtitlan and his men fled the city during the Noche Triste in June,1520. The Spanish and reinforcements returned a year on August 13,1521 to a civilization that had wiped out by famine. This made it easier to conquer the remaining Aztecs, the fall of the Aztec Empire was the key event in the formation of the Spanish overseas empire, with New Spain, which became Mexico, a major component. The Spanish conquerors could and did write accounts that narrated the conquest from the first landfalls in Mexico to the victory over the Mexica in Tenochtitlan on August 13,1521. Indigenous accounts are from particular native viewpoints and as the events had a impact on their polity. All accounts of the conquest and indigenous alike, have biases, in general, Spanish accounts do not credit their indigenous allies support. Individual conquerors accounts exaggerate that individuals contribution to the conquest, downplaying other conquerors, indigenous allies accounts stress their loyalty to the Spanish and their particular aid as being key to the Spanish victory.
Their accounts are similar to Spanish conquerors accounts contained in petitions for rewards and these were almost immediately published in Spain and in other parts of Europe. Interestingly, Cortéss right-hand man, Pedro de Alvarado did not write at any length about his actions in the New World, two letters to Cortés about Alvarados campaigns in Guatemala are published in The Conquistadors. Rather than it being a petition for rewards for services, as many Spanish accounts were, the account was used by eighteenth-century Jesuit Francisco Javier Clavijero in his descriptions of the history of Mexico. On the indigenous side, the allies of Cortés, particularly the Tlaxcalans, wrote extensively about their services to the Spanish Crown in the conquest, the most important of these are the pictorial Lienzo de Tlaxcala and the Historia de Tlaxcala by Diego Muñoz Camargo
University of Glasgow
The University of Glasgow is the fourth oldest university in the English-speaking world and one of Scotlands four ancient universities. Along with the University of Edinburgh, the University was part of the Scottish Enlightenment during the 18th century and it is currently a member of Universitas 21, the international network of research universities, and the Russell Group. Glasgow University served all of students by preparing them for professions, the law, civil service, teaching. It trained smaller but growing numbers for careers in science, originally located in the citys High Street, since 1870 the main University campus has been located at Gilmorehill in the West End of the city. Additionally, a number of university buildings are located elsewhere, such as the Veterinary School in Bearsden, and it is the second-oldest university in Scotland after St Andrews and the fourth-oldest in the English-speaking world. The universities of St Andrews and Aberdeen were ecclesiastical foundations, as one of the Ancient Universities of the United Kingdom, Glasgow University is one of only eight institutions to award undergraduate masters degrees in certain disciplines.
The University has been without its original Bull since the mid-sixteenth century, in 1560, during the political unrest accompanying the Scottish Reformation, the chancellor, Archbishop James Beaton, a supporter of the Marian cause, fled to France. He took with him, for safe-keeping, many of the archives and valuables of the Cathedral and the University, including the Mace, although the Mace was sent back in 1590, the archives were not. If they had not been lost by time, they certainly went astray during the French Revolution when the Scots College was under threat. Its records and valuables were moved for safe-keeping out of the city of Paris, the Bull remains the authority by which the University awards degrees. Teaching at the University began in the chapterhouse of Glasgow Cathedral, subsequently moving to nearby Rottenrow, the University was given 13 acres of land belonging to the Black Friars on High Street by Mary, Queen of Scots, in 1563. The Lion and Unicorn Staircase was transferred from the old site and is now attached to the Main Building.
To continue this work in his will he founded Andersons College, in 1973, Delphine Parrott became its first woman professor, as Gardiner Professor of Immunology. In October 2014, the university court voted for the University to become the first academic institution in Europe to divest from the fuel industry. The University is currently spread over a number of different campuses, the main one is the Gilmorehill campus, in Hillhead. The University has established joint departments with the Glasgow School of Art, the Universitys initial accommodation including Glasgow University Library was part of the complex of religious buildings in the precincts of Glasgow Cathedral. In the mid-seventeenth century, the Hamilton Building was replaced with a very grand two-court building with a decorated west front facing the High Street, called the Nova Erectio, over the following centuries, the Universitys size and scope continued to expand. In 1757 it built the Macfarlane Observatory and Scotlands first public museum and it was a centre of the Scottish Enlightenment and subsequently of the Industrial Revolution, and its expansion in the High Street was constrained
Nahuatl, known historically as Aztec, is a language or group of languages of the Uto-Aztecan language family. Varieties of Nahuatl are spoken by an estimated 1.5 million Nahua peoples, all Nahuan languages are indigenous to Mesoamerica. Nahuatl has been spoken in central Mexico since at least the seventh century CE and it was the language of the Aztecs who dominated what is now central Mexico during the Late Postclassic period of Mesoamerican history. This early literary language based on the Tenochtitlan variety has been labeled Classical Nahuatl, Nahuan languages are spoken in scattered communities, mostly in rural areas throughout central Mexico and along the coastline. There are considerable differences among varieties, and some are mutually unintelligible, Huasteca Nahuatl, with over one million speakers, is the most-spoken variety. They have all been subject to varying degrees of influence from Spanish, No modern Nahuan languages are identical to Classical Nahuatl, but those spoken in and around the Valley of Mexico are generally more closely related to it than those on the periphery.
Nahuan languages exhibit a complex morphology characterized by polysynthesis and agglutination, through a very long period of coexistence with the other indigenous Mesoamerican languages, they have absorbed many influences, coming to form part of the Mesoamerican language area. Many words from Nahuatl have been borrowed into Spanish, and since diffused into hundreds of other languages, most of these loanwords denote things indigenous to central Mexico which the Spanish heard mentioned for the first time by their Nahuatl names. English words of Nahuatl origin include avocado, chili, atlatl, peyote, axolotl, as a language label, the term Nahuatl encompasses a group of closely related languages or divergent dialects within the Nahuan branch of the Uto-Aztecan language family. The Mexican Instituto Nacional de Lenguas Indígenas recognize 30 different individual varieties within the language group labeled Nahuatl, the Ethnologue recognizes 28 varieties with separate ISO codes. Sometimes the label is used to include the Pipil language of El Salvador, within Mexico the question of whether to consider individual varieties to be languages or dialects of a single language is highly political.
This article focuses on describing the history of the group. For details on individual varieties or subgroups, see the individual articles, in the past, the branch of Uto-Aztecan to which Nahuatl belongs has been called Aztecan. From the 1990s onward, the alternative designation Nahuan has been used as a replacement especially in Spanish-language publications. The Nahuan branch of Uto-Aztecan is widely accepted as having two divisions, General Aztec and Pochutec, General Aztec encompasses the Nahuatl and Pipil languages. Pochutec is a scantily attested language, which became extinct in the 20th century, other researchers have argued that Pochutec should be considered a divergent variant of the western periphery. Nahuatl denotes at least Classical Nahuatl together with related languages spoken in Mexico. The inclusion of Pipil into the group is debated, current subclassification of Nahuatl rests on research by Canger and Lastra de Suárez
An illuminated manuscript is a manuscript in which the text is supplemented with such decoration as initials and miniature illustrations. Comparable Far Eastern and Mesoamerican works are described as painted, islamic manuscripts may be referred to as illuminated, illustrated or painted, though using essentially the same techniques as Western works. This article covers the technical and economic history of the subject, for an art-historical account, the earliest surviving substantive illuminated manuscripts are from the period 400 to 600, produced in the Kingdom of the Ostrogoths and the Eastern Roman Empire. The significance of these works lies not only in their inherent artistic and historical value, had it not been for the monastic scribes of Late Antiquity, most literature of Greece and Rome would have perished in Europe. As it was, the patterns of textual survivals were shaped by their usefulness to the severely constricted literate group of Christians, the majority of surviving manuscripts are from the Middle Ages, although many survive from the Renaissance, along with a very limited number from Late Antiquity.
The majority of manuscripts are of a religious nature. However, especially from the 13th century onward, a number of secular texts were illuminated. Most illuminated manuscripts were created as codices, which had superseded scrolls, a very few illuminated manuscript fragments survive on papyrus, which does not last nearly as long as vellum or parchment. Most medieval manuscripts, illuminated or not, were written on parchment, beginning in the late Middle Ages manuscripts began to be produced on paper. Illuminated manuscripts continued to be produced in the early 16th century, Manuscripts are among the most common items to survive from the Middle Ages, many thousands survive. They are the best surviving specimens of medieval painting, for many areas and time periods, they are the only surviving examples of painting. There are a few examples from periods, the type of book that was most often heavily and richly illuminated, sometimes known as a display book, varied between periods. In the first millennium, these were most likely to be Gospel Books, such as the Lindisfarne Gospels, the Romanesque period saw the creation of many huge illuminated complete Bibles – one in Sweden requires three librarians to lift it.
Many Psalters were illuminated in both this and the Gothic period. Finally, the Book of Hours, very commonly the personal book of a wealthy layperson, was often richly illuminated in the Gothic period. Other books, both liturgical and not, continued to be illuminated at all periods, the Byzantine world continued to produce manuscripts in its own style, versions of which spread to other Orthodox and Eastern Christian areas. See Medieval art for other regions and types, reusing parchments by scraping the surface and reusing them was a common practice, the traces often left behind of the original text are known as palimpsests. The Gothic period, which saw an increase in the production of these beautiful artifacts, saw more secular works such as chronicles
Lienzo de Quauhquechollan
The Lienzo de Quauhquechollan is a 16th-century lienzo of the Nahua, a group of indigenous peoples of Mexico. It is one of two surviving Nahua pictorial records recounting the Spanish conquest of Guatemala and one of the earliest surviving maps of what is now Guatemala. The cloth was probably painted in Ciudad Vieja, in the modern Guatemalan department of Sacatepéquez and these allies had assisted conquistador Jorge de Alvarado in his campaign of 1527 to 1529. The Quauhquechollan allies settled in the Guatemalan Highlands and the cloth records their participation in the Spanish conquest of Mexico, the original is currently in the Casa de Alfeñique Museum in Puebla in central Mexico. The Lienzo was made sometime in the 1530s, it consists of 15 individual pieces of painted cotton stitched together to form a large map, the pieces are of differing sizes and manufacture and some of them are reused. The complete Lienzo de Quauhquechollan measures 3.25 by 2.35 metres, the Lienzo was executed in a central Mexican style using indigenous artistic conventions to portray a mixture of Nahua and Spanish subjects.
The main focus of the map lies within the borders of modern Guatemala, specifically the area around Chimaltenango and Santiago de los Caballeros de Guatemala, the Lienzo concentrates upon the role of the Quauhquechollan allies in the conquest, their travels and the battles they took part in. It was executed by more than one artist, as evidenced by differences in the painting. It has various pieces of paper fixed beside the images and bearing text using the Latin alphabet, the top left corner of the Lienzo de Quauhquechollan is illustrated with the place glyph representing Quauhquechollan combined with the Habsburg coat of arms. Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés is shown embracing a Quauhaquechollan noble, both are accompanied by their retinues and the scene includes an exchange of gifts. Another scene shows Jorge de Alvarado at the head of an army as they depart from Quauhquechollan. All the Quauhquechollans are depicted bearing Spanish swords, a privilege bestowed upon some of the allies of the conquistadors.
The route of the army on its march to Guatemala is depicted, including Tehuantepec in Oaxaca, in Guatemala the army passes through Retalhuleu, Zapotitlán and Suchitepéquez and is shown engaging in a number of battles, even though Pedro de Alvarado had previously conquered this region. Lienzo de Tlaxcala Photo of the Lienzo de Quauhquechollan at the Universidad Francisco Marroquín
Aztec codices are books written by pre-Columbian and colonial-era Aztecs. These codices provide some of the best primary sources for Aztec culture, the pre-Columbian codices mostly do not in fact use the codex form and are, or originally were, long folded sheets. They differ from European books in that they mostly consist of images and pictograms, the colonial era codices not only contain Aztec pictograms, but Classical Nahuatl and occasionally Latin. Some are entirely in Nahuatl without pictorial content, although there are very few surviving pre-conquest codices, the tlacuilo tradition endured the transition to colonial culture, scholars now have access to a body of around 500 colonial-era codices. Colonial-era Nahuatl language documentation is the texts of the New Philology. The Codex Borbonicus is a written by Aztec priests around the time of the Spanish conquest of Mexico. Like all pre-Columbian Aztec codices, it was pictorial in nature. Codex Bornobicus is held at the Library of the National Assembly of France, the Boturini Codex was painted by an unknown Aztec author some time between 1530 and 1541, roughly a decade after the Spanish conquest of Mexico.
Pictorial in nature, it tells the story of the legendary Aztec journey from Aztlán to the Valley of Mexico, rather than employing separate pages, the author used one long sheet of amatl, or fig bark, accordion-folded into 21½ pages. There is a rip in the middle of the 22nd page, unlike many other Aztec codices, the drawings are not colored, but rather merely outlined with black ink. Also known as Tira de la Peregrinación, it is named one of its first European owners. It is now held in the Museo Nacional de Antropología in Mexico City, the Codex Mendoza is a pictorial document, with Spanish annotations and commentary, composed circa 1541. It is divided into three sections, a history of each Aztec ruler and their conquests, a list of the tribute paid by each province. It is held in the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford, the Florentine Codex is a set of 12 books created under the supervision of Bernardino de Sahagún between approximately 1540 and 1585. It is a copy of original materials which are now lost.
Perhaps more than any source, the Florentine Codex has been the major source of Aztec life in the years before the Spanish conquest. Anderson published English translations of the Nahuatl text of the books in separate volumes. A full color, facsimile copy of the codex was published in three bound volumes in 1979
Philip II of Spain
Philip II of Spain, called the Prudent, was King of Spain, King of Portugal, King of Naples and Sicily, and jure uxoris King of England and Ireland. He was Duke of Milan, from 1555, he was lord of the Seventeen Provinces of the Netherlands. Known in Spain as Felipe el Prudente, his empire included territories on every continent known to Europeans, during his reign, Spain reached the height of its influence and power. This is sometimes called the Golden Age, the expression, the empire on which the sun never sets, was coined during Philips time to reflect the extent of his dominion. During Philips reign there were separate state bankruptcies in 1557,1560,1569,1575 and this was partly the cause of the declaration of independence that created the Dutch Republic in 1581. The Ambassador went on to say He dresses very tastefully, the culture and courtly life of Spain were an important influence in his early life. He was tutored by Juan Martínez Siliceo, the future Archbishop of Toledo, Philip displayed reasonable aptitude in arms and letters alike.
Later he would study with more illustrious tutors, including the humanist Juan Cristóbal Calvete de Estrella, though Philip had good command over Latin and Portuguese, he never managed to equal his father, Charles V, as a polyglot. While Philip was a German archduke of the House of Habsburg, Philip felt himself to be culturally Spanish, he had been born in Spain and raised in the Castilian court, his native tongue was Spanish, and he preferred to live in Spain. This would ultimately impede his succession to the imperial throne, in April 1528, when Philip was eleven months old, he received the oath of allegiance as heir to the crown from the Cortes of Castile. Philip was close to his two sisters, María and Juana, and to his two pages, the Portuguese nobleman Rui Gomes da Silva and Luis de Requesens, the son of his governor Juan de Zúñiga. These men would serve Philip throughout their lives, as would Antonio Pérez, Philips martial training was undertaken by his governor, Juan de Zúñiga, a Castilian nobleman who served as the commendador mayor of Castile.
The practical lessons in warfare were overseen by the Duke of Alba during the Italian Wars, Philip was present at the Siege of Perpignan in 1542 but did not see action as the Spanish army under Alba decisively defeated the besieging French forces under the Dauphin of France. On his way back to Castile, Philip received the oath of allegiance of the Aragonese Cortes at Monzón. The king-emperors interactions with his son during his stay in Spain convinced him of Philips precocity in statesmanship, who had previously been made the Duke of Milan in 1540, began governing the most extensive empire in the world at the young age of sixteen. Charles left Philip with experienced advisors—notably the secretary Francisco de los Cobos, Philip was left with extensive written instructions that emphasised piety, patience and distrust. These principles of Charles were gradually assimilated by his son, who would grow up to become grave, self-possessed, Philip spoke softly and had an icy self-mastery, in the words of one of his ministers, he had a smile that cut like a sword.
After living in the Netherlands in the years of his reign
History of Mexico
The history of Mexico, a country in the southern portion of North America, covers a period of more than three millennia. First populated more than 13,000 years ago, the territory had complex indigenous civilizations before being conquered and colonized by the Spanish in the 16th century and this era before the arrival of Europeans is called variously the prehispanic era or the precolumbian era. The Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan became the Spanish capital Mexico City, from 1521, the Spanish conquest of the Aztec empire incorporated the region into the Spanish Empire, with New Spain its colonial era name and Mexico City the center of colonial rule. It was built on the ruins of the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan, during the colonial era, Mexicos long-established Mesoamerican civilizations mixed with European culture. For three centuries Mexico was part of the Spanish Empire, whose legacy is a country with a Spanish-speaking, after a protracted struggle for independence, New Spain became the sovereign nation of Mexico, with the signing of the Treaty of Córdoba.
A brief period of monarchy, called the First Mexican Empire, was followed by the founding of the Republic of Mexico, legal racial categories were eliminated, abolishing the system of castas. Slavery was not abolished at independence in 1821 or with the constitution in 1824, Mexico continues to be constituted as a federated republic, under the Mexican Constitution of 1917. The Age of Santa Anna is the period of the late 1820s to the early 1850s that was dominated by criollo military-man-turned-president Antonio López de Santa Anna. In 1846, the Mexican–American War was provoked by the United States, even though Santa Anna bore significant responsibility for the disastrous defeat, he returned to office. The Liberal Reform began with the overthrow of Santa Anna by Mexican liberals, the Reform sparked a civil war between liberals defending the constitution and conservatives, who opposed it. The US was engaged in its own Civil War, so did not attempt to block the foreign intervention, abraham Lincoln consistently supported the Mexican liberals.
At the end of the war in the US and the triumph of the Union forces. France withdrew its support of Maximilian in 1867 and his monarchist rule collapsed in 1867, with the end of the Second Mexican Empire, the period often called the Restored Republic brought back Benito Juárez as president. Following his death from an attack, Sebastian Lerdo de Tejada succeed him. He was overthrown by liberal military man Porfirio Diaz, who after consolidating power ushered in a period of stability, the half-century of economic stagnation and political chaos following independence ended. The Porfiriate is the era when army hero Porfirio Díaz held power as president of Mexico almost continuously from 1876-1911 and he promoted order and progress that saw the modernization of the economy and the flow of foreign investment to the country. The period is called the Porfiriato, which ended with the outbreak of the Mexican Revolution in 1910. Under Díaz, Mexicos industry and infrastructure were modernized by a strong, increased tax revenues and better administration brought dramatic improvements in public safety, public health, mining, foreign trade, and national finances
A codex is a book constructed of a number of sheets of paper, papyrus, or similar materials, with hand-written contents. The book is bound by stacking the pages and fixing one edge. Some codices are continuously folded like a concertina, the alternative to paged codex format for a long document is the continuous scroll. Examples of folded codices include the Maya codices, sometimes people use the term for a book-style format, including modern printed books but excluding folded books. The Romans developed the form from wooden writing tablets, the codexs gradual replacement of the scroll—the dominant book form in the ancient world—has been called the most important advance in book making before the invention of printing. The codex transformed the shape of the book itself, and offered a form that lasted for centuries, the spread of the codex is often associated with the rise of Christianity, which adopted the format for use with the Bible early on. In fact, any combination of codices and scrolls with papyrus and parchment is technically feasible, the codex began to replace the scroll almost as soon as it was invented.
In Egypt, by the century, the codex outnumbered the scroll by ten to one based on surviving examples. By the sixth century, the scroll had almost vanished as a medium for literature, even modern paperbacks are codices, but publishers and scholars reserve the term for manuscript books produced from Late antiquity until the Middle Ages. The scholarly study of manuscripts from the point of view of the bookbinding craft is called codicology. The study of ancient documents in general is called paleography, the Romans used precursors made of reusable wax-covered tablets of wood for taking notes and other informal writings. Two ancient polyptychs, a pentatych and octotych, excavated at Herculaneum used a connecting system that presages sewing on of thongs or cords. Julius Caesar may have been the first Roman to reduce scrolls to pages in the form of a note-book. At the turn of the 1st century AD, a kind of folded parchment notebook called pugillares membranei in Latin became commonly used for writing in the Roman Empire, theodore Cressy Skeat theorized that this form of notebook was invented in Rome and spread rapidly to the Near East.
Codices are described in works by the Classical Latin poet. He wrote a series of five couplets meant to accompany gifts of literature that Romans exchanged during the festival of Saturnalia. ”Early codices of parchment or papyrus appear to have widely used as personal notebooks. The parchment notebook pages were commonly washed or scraped for re-use and consequently, writings in a codex were often considered informal, as early as the early 2nd century, there is evidence that a codex—usually of papyrus—was the preferred format among Christians. In the library of the Villa of the Papyri, however, in the Nag Hammadi library, hidden about AD390, all texts are codices
During his reign the Aztec Empire reached its greatest size. Through warfare, Moctezuma expanded the territory as far south as Xoconosco in Chiapas and the Isthmus of Tehuantepec and he changed the previous meritocratic system of social hierarchy and widened the divide between pipiltin and macehualtin by prohibiting commoners from working in the royal palaces. The portrayal of Moctezuma in history has mostly been colored by his role as ruler of a defeated nation, the biases of some historical sources make it difficult to understand his actions during the Spanish invasion. Moctezuma had many wives and concubines but only two women were his Queens – Tlapalizquixochtzin and Teotlalco and he was a King Consort of Ecatepec because Tlapalizquixochtzin was Queen of that city. His many children included Princess Isabel Moctezuma — and sons Chimalpopoca, the Nahuatl pronunciation of his name is. It is a compound of a noun meaning lord and a meaning to frown in anger. The Aztecs did not use numbers, they were given retroactively by historians to more easily distinguish him from the first Moctezuma.
The Aztec chronicles called him Motecuhzoma Xocoyotzin, while the first was called Motecuhzoma Ilhuicamina or Huehuemotecuhzoma, the descriptions of the life of Moctezuma are full of contradictions, and thus nothing is known for certain about his personality and rule. He did not wear his hair long but just over his ears and his face was rather long and cheerful, he had fine eyes, and in his appearance and manner could express geniality or, when necessary, a serious composure. He was very neat and clean, and took a bath every afternoon and he had many women as his mistresses, the daughters of chieftains, but two legitimate wives who were Caciques in their own right, and only some of his servants knew of it. He was quite free from sodomy, the clothes he wore one day he did not wear again till three or four days later. He had a guard of two hundred chieftains lodged in rooms beside his own, only some of whom were permitted to speak to him. It was stated that he had reigned for seventeen years, and was the best king they ever had in Mexico, I have spoken of the sorrow we all felt when we saw that Montezuma was dead.
We even blamed the Mercederian friar for not having persuaded him to become a Christian, Moctezuma in particular is depicted unfavorably as a weak-willed and indulgent ruler. Historian James Lockhart suggests that the people needed to have a scapegoat for the Aztec defeat, unlike Bernal Díaz, who was recording his memories many years after the fact, Cortés wrote his Cartas de relación to justify his actions to the Spanish Crown. His prose is characterized by descriptions and explanations, along with frequent personal addresses to the King. They came in two columns, pressed very close to the walls of the street, which is wide and beautiful. Mutezuma came down the middle of street with two chiefs, one on his right hand and the other on his left
Mexico-Tenochtitlan, commonly known as Tenochtitlan was a Mexica located on an island in Lake Texcoco, in the Valley of Mexico. Founded on June 20,1325, it became the capital of the expanding Aztec Empire in the 15th century, at its peak it was the largest city in the Pre-Columbian Americas. It subsequently became a cabecera of the Viceroyalty of New Spain, today the ruins of Tenochtitlan are located in Mexico Citys downtown. Tenochtitlan was one of two Nahua āltēpetl on the island, the other being Tlatelolco, the name Tenochtitlan was thought to come from Nahuatl tetl and nōchtli and is often thought to mean, Among the prickly pears rocks. However, one attestation in the late 16th-century manuscript known as the Bancroft dialogues suggest the second vowel was short, Tenochtitlan covered an estimated 8 to 13.5 km2, situated on the western side of the shallow Lake Texcoco. At the time of Spanish conquests, Mexico City comprised both Tenochtitlan and Tlatelolco, the city was connected to the mainland by causeways leading to the north and west.
The causeways were interrupted by bridges that allowed canoes and other traffic to pass freely. The bridges could be pulled away, if necessary, to defend the city, the city was interlaced with a series of canals, so that all sections of the city could be visited either on foot or via canoe. Lake Texcoco was the largest of five interconnected lakes, since it formed in an endorheic basin, Lake Texcoco was brackish. During the reign of Moctezuma I, the levee of Nezahualcoyotl was constructed, estimated to be 12 to 16 km in length, the levee was completed circa 1453. The levee kept fresh spring-fed water in the waters around Tenochtitlan and kept the brackish waters beyond the dike, two double aqueducts, each more than 4 km long and made of terracotta, provided the city with fresh water from the springs at Chapultepec. This was intended mainly for cleaning and washing, for drinking, water from mountain springs was preferred. Most of the population liked to bathe twice a day, Moctezuma was said to take four baths a day.
According to the context of Aztec culture in literature, the soap that they most likely used was the root of a plant called copalxocotl, and to clean their clothes they used the root of metl. Also, the classes and pregnant women washed themselves in a temazcalli, similar to a sauna bath. This was popular in other Mesoamerican cultures, and some of our soldiers even asked whether the things that we saw were not a dream. I do not know how to describe it, seeing things as we did that had never heard of or seen before. The city was divided into four zones, or campan, each campan was divided into 20 districts, there were three main streets that crossed the city, each leading to one of the three causeways to the mainland of Tepeyac and Tlacopan