Nahuatl, known as Aztec, is a language or group of languages of the Uto-Aztecan language family. Varieties of Nahuatl are spoken by about 1.7 million Nahua peoples, most of whom live in central Mexico. Nahuatl has been spoken in central Mexico since at least the seventh century CE, it was the language of the Aztecs, who dominated what is now central Mexico during the Late Postclassic period of Mesoamerican history. During the centuries preceding the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire, the Aztecs had expanded to incorporate a large part of central Mexico, their influence caused the variety of Nahuatl spoken by the residents of Tenochtitlan to become a prestige language in Mesoamerica. At the conquest, with the introduction of the Latin alphabet, Nahuatl became a literary language, many chronicles, works of poetry, administrative documents and codices were written in it during the 16th and 17th centuries; this early literary language based on the Tenochtitlan variety has been labeled Classical Nahuatl, is among the most studied and best-documented languages of the Americas.
Today, Nahuan languages are spoken in scattered communities in rural areas throughout central Mexico and along the coastline. There are considerable differences among varieties, some are not mutually intelligible. Huasteca Nahuatl, with over one million speakers, is the most-spoken variety. All varieties have 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 more related to it than those on the periphery. Under Mexico's General Law of Linguistic Rights of the Indigenous Peoples promulgated in 2003, Nahuatl and the other 63 indigenous languages of Mexico are recognized as lenguas nacionales in the regions where they are spoken, enjoying the same status as Spanish within their regions. Nahuan languages exhibit a complex morphology characterized by polysynthesis and agglutination. Through a 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, from there, were 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", "chayote", "chili", "chocolate", "atlatl", "coyote", "peyote", "axolotl" and "tomato"; as a language label, the term "Nahuatl" encompasses a group of related languages or divergent dialects within the Nahuan branch of the Uto-Aztecan language family. The Mexican Instituto Nacional de Lenguas Indígenas recognizes 30 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. Regardless of whether "Nahuatl" is considered to label a dialect continuum or a group of separate languages, the varieties form a single branch within the Uto-Aztecan family, descended from a single Proto-Nahuan language.
Within Mexico, the question of whether to consider individual varieties to be languages or dialects of a single language is political. This article focuses on describing the general history of the group and on giving an overview of the diversity it encompasses. 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 in Spanish-language publications; the Nahuan branch of Uto-Aztecan is accepted as having two divisions: "General Aztec" and Pochutec. General Aztec encompasses the Pipil languages. Pochutec is a scantily attested language, which became extinct in the 20th century, which Campbell and Langacker classify as being outside of general Aztec. 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 modern languages spoken in Mexico.
The inclusion of Pipil into the group is debated. Lyle Campbell classified Pipil as separate from the Nahuatl branch within general Aztecan, whereas dialectologists like Una Canger, Karen Dakin, Yolanda Lastra and Terrence Kaufman have preferred to include Pipil within the General Aztecan branch, citing close historical ties with the eastern peripheral dialects of General Aztec. Current subclassification of Nahuatl rests on research by Canger and Lastra de Suárez. Canger introduced the scheme of a Central grouping and two Peripheral groups, Lastra confirmed this notion, differing in some details. Canger & Dakin demonstrated a basic split between Eastern and Western branches of Nahuan, considered to reflect the oldest division of the proto-Nahuan speech community. Canger considered the central dialect area to be an innovative subarea within the Western branch, but in 2011, she suggested that it arose as an urban koiné language with features from both Western and Eastern dialect areas. Canger tentatively included dialects of La Huasteca in the Central group, while Lastra de Suárez places them in the Eastern Periphery, followed by Kaufman.
The terminology used to describe varieties of spoken Nahuatl is inconsistently applied. Many terms are used with multiple denotations, or a single dialect grou
Mexico City, or the City of Mexico, is the capital of Mexico and the most populous city in North America. Mexico City is one of the most important financial centres in the Americas, it is located in the Valley of Mexico, a large valley in the high plateaus in the center of Mexico, at an altitude of 2,240 meters. The city has 16 boroughs; the 2009 population for the city proper was 8.84 million people, with a land area of 1,485 square kilometers. According to the most recent definition agreed upon by the federal and state governments, the population of Greater Mexico City is 21.3 million, which makes it the largest metropolitan area of the Western Hemisphere, the eleventh-largest agglomeration, the largest Spanish-speaking city in the world. Greater Mexico City has a GDP of $411 billion in 2011, making Greater Mexico City one of the most productive urban areas in the world; the city was responsible for generating 15.8% of Mexico's GDP, the metropolitan area accounted for about 22% of total national GDP.
If it were an independent country, in 2013, Mexico City would be the fifth-largest economy in Latin America, five times as large as Costa Rica and about the same size as Peru. Mexico’s capital is both the oldest capital city in the Americas and one of two founded by Native Americans, the other being Quito, Ecuador; the city was built on an island of Lake Texcoco by the Aztecs in 1325 as Tenochtitlan, completely destroyed in the 1521 siege of Tenochtitlan and subsequently redesigned and rebuilt in accordance with the Spanish urban standards. In 1524, the municipality of Mexico City was established, known as México Tenochtitlán, as of 1585, it was known as Ciudad de México. Mexico City was the political and financial center of a major part of the Spanish colonial empire. After independence from Spain was achieved, the federal district was created in 1824. After years of demanding greater political autonomy, residents were given the right to elect both a Head of Government and the representatives of the unicameral Legislative Assembly by election in 1997.
Since, the left-wing Party of the Democratic Revolution has controlled both of them. The city has several progressive policies, such as abortion on request, a limited form of euthanasia, no-fault divorce, same-sex marriage. On January 29, 2016, it ceased to be the Federal District, is now known as Ciudad de México, with a greater degree of autonomy. A clause in the Constitution of Mexico, prevents it from becoming a state, as it is the seat of power in the country, unless the capital of the country were relocated elsewhere; the city of Mexico-Tenochtitlan was founded by the Mexica people in 1325. The old Mexica city, now referred to as Tenochtitlan was built on an island in the center of the inland lake system of the Valley of Mexico, which it shared with a smaller city-state called Tlatelolco. According to legend, the Mexicas' principal god, indicated the site where they were to build their home by presenting a golden eagle perched on a prickly pear devouring a rattlesnake. Between 1325 and 1521, Tenochtitlan grew in size and strength dominating the other city-states around Lake Texcoco and in the Valley of Mexico.
When the Spaniards arrived, the Aztec Empire had reached much of Mesoamerica, touching both the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean. After landing in Veracruz, Spanish explorer Hernán Cortés advanced upon Tenochtitlan with the aid of many of the other native peoples, arriving there on November 8, 1519. Cortés and his men marched along the causeway leading into the city from Iztapalapa, the city's ruler, Moctezuma II, greeted the Spaniards. Cortés put Moctezuma under house arrest. Tensions increased until, on the night of June 30, 1520 – during a struggle known as "La Noche Triste" – the Aztecs rose up against the Spanish intrusion and managed to capture or drive out the Europeans and their Tlaxcalan allies. Cortés regrouped at Tlaxcala; the Aztecs thought the Spaniards were permanently gone, they elected a new king, Cuitláhuac, but he soon died. Cortés began a siege of Tenochtitlan in May 1521. For three months, the city suffered from the lack of food and water as well as the spread of smallpox brought by the Europeans.
Cortés and his allies landed their forces in the south of the island and fought their way through the city. Cuauhtémoc surrendered in August 1521; the Spaniards razed Tenochtitlan during the final siege of the conquest. Cortés first settled in Coyoacán, but decided to rebuild the Aztec site to erase all traces of the old order, he did not establish a territory under his own personal rule, but remained loyal to the Spanish crown. The first Spanish viceroy arrived in Mexico City fourteen years later. By that time, the city had again become a city-state, having power that extended far beyond its borders. Although the Spanish preserved Tenochtitlan's basic layout, they built Catholic churches over the old Aztec temples and claimed the imperial palaces for themselves. Tenochtitlan was renamed "Mexico"; the city had been the capital of the Aztec empire and in the colonial era, Mexico City became the capital of New Spain. The viceroy of Mexico or vice-king lived in the viceregal palace on Zócalo; the Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral, the seat of the Archbishopric of New Spain, was const
State of Mexico
The State of Mexico is one of the 32 federal entities of Mexico. It is the most populous, as well as the most densely populated state, it is divided into 125 municipalities and its capital city is Toluca de Lerdo. The State of Mexico is abbreviated to "Edomex" from Estado de México in Spanish, to distinguish it from the name of the whole country, it is located in South-Central Mexico. It is bordered by the states of Querétaro and Hidalgo to the north and Guerrero to the south, Michoacán to the west and Puebla to the east, surrounds on three sides Mexico City; the state's origins are in the territory of the Aztec Empire, which remained a political division of New Spain during the Spanish colonial period. After gaining independence, Mexico City was chosen as the capital of the new nation. Years parts of the state were broken off to form the states of Hidalgo and Morelos; these territorial separations have left the state with the size and shape it has today, with the Toluca Valley to the west of Mexico City and a panhandle that extends around the north and east of this entity.
The state name is México according to the 1917 Constitution of the United Mexican States, but to distinguish it from both the city and the country it is most called Estado de México. The demonym used to refer to people and things from the state is mexiquense, distinct from mexicano, which describes the people or things from the country as a whole. Mēxihco was the Nahuatl name for the Valley of Mexico where the cities of the Mexica were located; as such, the district that became Mexico City was properly known as Mexico-Tenochtitlan in the years shortly before and after Spanish conquest. After the Spanish Conquest, the term México came to be used for Tenochtitlan/Mexico City and all the pre-conquest lands it controlled, including several other aforementioned Mexican states incorporated in the boundaries of the Mexico state. There are two possible origins for the name “Mexico.” The first is that it derives from xictla to mean from the navel of the moon. This comes from the old Aztec idea that the craters on the moon form a rabbit figure with one crater imitating a navel.
The other possible origin is that it is derived from “Mextictli” an alternate name for the god Huitzilopochtli. Anáhuac was the proper term for all territories dominated by the Aztec Empire, from Cem Anáhuac, "the entire earth" or "surrounded by waters" e.g. the waters of Lake Texcoco which were considered to be the center of the Aztec world, as such was proposed as an early name for the entire nation of Mexico prior to independence, to distinguish it from the administrative division of New Spain that became the State of Mexico. The earliest evidence of human habitation in current territory of the state is a quartz scraper and obsidian blade found in the Tlapacoya area, an island in the former Lake Chalco, they are dated to the Pleistocene era. The first people were hunter-gatherers. Stone age implements have been found all over the territory from mammoth bones, to stone tools to human remains. Most have been found in the areas of Los Reyes Acozac, Tepexpan, San Francisco Mazapa, El Risco and Tequixquiac.
Between 20,000 and 5000 BCE, the people here went from hunting and gathering to sedentary villages with farming and domesticated animals. The main crop was corn, stone tools for the grinding of this grain become common. Crops include beans, chili peppers and squash grown near established villages. Evidence of ceramics appears around 2500 BCE with the earliest artifacts of these appearing in Tlapacoya, Malinalco and Tlatilco. In prehistoric State of Mexico, the Tepexpan Man is an important finding for Mexican and foreign anthropologists; some scholars attribute an age of 11 thousand years, others 8 thousand, some have suggested 5 thousand years old. This individual was identified as a male, but recent research confirms a female identity, although this is still a subject of discussion. Sacrum bone found in Tequixquiac is considered a work of prehistoric art; these people were thought to be nomadic, hunting large animals such as mammoths and gathering fruits as evidenced by archaeological evidence found at the site.
One of the most salient discoveries of primitive art in America was found in here, called the Tequixquiac Bone, which had no known purpose, but reflected the ideological sense of the artist who carved the piece of bone from a camelid around 22,000 years BCE. The first native settlers of Tequixquiac were the Aztecs and Otomi, who decided to settle here permanently for the abundance of rivers and springs, they were engaged in agriculture and the breeding of domestic animals. The earliest major civilization of the state is Teotihuacan, with the Pyramids of the Sun and Moon being built between 100 BCE and 100 CE. Between 800 and 900 CE, the Matlatzincas established their dominion with Teotenango as capital; this city is walled with plazas, temples, living quarters and a Mesoamerican ball game court. In the 15th century, the Aztecs conquered the Toluca and Chalco valleys to the west and east of the Valley of Mexico respectively. Part of the Toluca Valley was held by the Purépechas as well. Other dominions during the pre-Hispanic period include that of the Chichimecas in Tenayuca and of the Acolhuas in Huexotla
Mexico the United Mexican States, is a country in the southern portion of North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States. Covering 2,000,000 square kilometres, the nation is the fifth largest country in the Americas by total area and the 13th largest independent state in the world. With an estimated population of over 120 million people, the country is the eleventh most populous state and the most populous Spanish-speaking state in the world, while being the second most populous nation in Latin America after Brazil. Mexico is a federation comprising 31 states and Mexico City, a special federal entity, the capital city and its most populous city. Other metropolises in the state include Guadalajara, Puebla, Tijuana and León. Pre-Columbian Mexico dates to about 8000 BC and is identified as one of five cradles of civilization and was home to many advanced Mesoamerican civilizations such as the Olmec, Teotihuacan, Zapotec and Aztec before first contact with Europeans. In 1521, the Spanish Empire conquered and colonized the territory from its politically powerful base in Mexico-Tenochtitlan, administered as the viceroyalty of New Spain.
Three centuries the territory became a nation state following its recognition in 1821 after the Mexican War of Independence. The post-independence period was tumultuous, characterized by economic inequality and many contrasting political changes; the Mexican–American War led to a territorial cession of the extant northern territories to the United States. The Pastry War, the Franco-Mexican War, a civil war, two empires, the Porfiriato occurred in the 19th century; the Porfiriato was ended by the start of the Mexican Revolution in 1910, which culminated with the promulgation of the 1917 Constitution and the emergence of the country's current political system as a federal, democratic republic. Mexico has the 11th largest by purchasing power parity; the Mexican economy is linked to those of its 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement partners the United States. In 1994, Mexico became the first Latin American member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, it is classified as an upper-middle income country by the World Bank and a newly industrialized country by several analysts.
The country is considered both a regional power and a middle power, is identified as an emerging global power. Due to its rich culture and history, Mexico ranks first in the Americas and seventh in the world for number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Mexico is an ecologically megadiverse country, ranking fourth in the world for its biodiversity. Mexico receives a huge number of tourists every year: in 2018, it was the sixth most-visited country in the world, with 39 million international arrivals. Mexico is a member of the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the G8+5, the G20, the Uniting for Consensus group of the UN, the Pacific Alliance trade bloc. Mēxihco is the Nahuatl term for the heartland of the Aztec Empire, namely the Valley of Mexico and surrounding territories, with its people being known as the Mexica, it is believed to be a toponym for the valley which became the primary ethnonym for the Aztec Triple Alliance as a result, although it could have been the other way around.
In the colonial era, back when Mexico was called New Spain this territory became the Intendency of Mexico and after New Spain achieved independence from the Spanish Empire it came to be known as the State of Mexico with the new country being named after its capital: the City of Mexico, which itself was founded in 1524 on top of the ancient Mexica capital of Mexico-Tenochtitlan. Traditionally, the name Tenochtitlan was thought to come from Nahuatl tetl and nōchtli and is thought to mean "Among the prickly pears rocks". However, one attestation in the late 16th-century manuscript known as "the Bancroft dialogues" suggests the second vowel was short, so that the true etymology remains uncertain; the suffix -co is the Nahuatl locative, making the word a place name. Beyond that, the etymology is uncertain, it has been suggested that it is derived from Mextli or Mēxihtli, a secret name for the god of war and patron of the Mexica, Huitzilopochtli, in which case Mēxihco means "place where Huitzilopochtli lives".
Another hypothesis suggests that Mēxihco derives from a portmanteau of the Nahuatl words for "moon" and navel. This meaning might refer to Tenochtitlan's position in the middle of Lake Texcoco; the system of interconnected lakes, of which Texcoco formed the center, had the form of a rabbit, which the Mesoamericans pareidolically associated with the moon rabbit. Still another hypothesis suggests that the word is derived from Mēctli, the name of the goddess of maguey; the name of the city-state was transliterated to Spanish as México with the phonetic value of the letter x in Medieval Spanish, which represented the voiceless postalveolar fricative. This sound, as well as the voiced postalveolar fricative, represented by a j, evolved into a voiceless velar fricative during the 16th century; this led to the use of the variant Méjico in many publications in Spanish, most notably in Spain, whereas in Mexico and most other Spanish–speaking countries, México was the preferred spelling. In recent years, the Real Academia Española, which regulates the Spanish l