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Mesoamerican Cultures




Aztec Culture

Form of Government

Culture had a teocrathic goverment government had a noticeable piramidal social stratification. In highest were "the noble" gentlemen and I along with illustrate the priests, followed of the soldiers and the merchants. In the following centuries and until the arrival of the Spaniards, they dominated the neighboring towns and they constructed a vast empire. The Maxima Aztec authority was the Tlatoani or Huey Tlatoani. To this position one did not go away by inheritance, but by means of an election of an Electoral Advice called Tlatocan. The Cihuacoatl was directly underneath the Tlatoani and was the one in charge to direct the city and to share the authority of the previous one in its absence, reason why we can see that the present political structure and the one of that time did not have great differences. The groups sgrandes were more pilli (integral of a nobility that constituted the real family) mayenques (craftsmen) and the macehuales: common people, were agriculturists, craftsmen, healers, bricklayers, carpenters, etc., and were forced to be in the service military, to the collective work and to pay taxes; but when they reached a married majority of age and, these obligations went away with the obtaining of an ample parcel destined to construct their definitive house with space for an orchard. The political authority that granted unit and integration in the river basin during Delayed Postclásico was Mexico-Tenochtitlan, whose ascent was consequence of the alliance of three great kingdoms: Tenochtitlan, the Texcoco and Tlacopan. But the Aztecs nonsingle dominated the center of Mexico, but that with time constructed an empire that reached an area superior to the 200,000 km2 in which they lived between 5 and 6 million inhabitants. The empire was divided in provinces, which they were controlled by means of fortified sites that as well dominated to lcaminos of commerce and the circulation of the tributes rendered by the submissive provinces, tributes that they had to pay to the great metropolis of the center of Mexico.


The elements of the Aztec religion (sacerdotal and cultured rites, sacrifices, celebrations, organizations) have very diverse origins that are an inheritance in common with many of the towns of Old Mexico. They venerated to a great variety of Gods, for example: - Huitzilopochtli was the God of the war, most important for the Aztecs. - Coyolxahuqui, goddess of the moon, that according to Aztec mythology was assassinated by its brother the God of the sun. - Tláloc, God of rain. - Quetzalcóatl or emplumada serpent, inventive God of the writing and the calendar, associated with the planet Venus and the resurrection. - Huehueteoti or old God, fire God. - all-consuming Tlazolteotl or of inmundicias, goddess that ignited the lujurioso love. - Xochipilli or prince of the flowers. - Tezcatlipoca or mirror that emits smoke. Huitzilopochtli, the tribal God of the Aztecs, promised to show its town a place where they had to remain and to construct his great Tenochtitlán capital. It said that it looked for an eagle to them put in a cactus, with a serpent in the tip. Front page of codex Mendoza (a book which it counts the history of the Aztecs), locates the foundation of Tenochtitlán in 1325 or 1345. The City of Mexico is built in the same place. The Aztecs caused the calls flowery wars, to capture prisoners military who were offered to the Gods, being thought that the blood of the sacrifices gave force to the Sun, to follow their way at night and to appear again in the horizon.


Aztec thanks to the lakes that were in the center of the region, which today we know like Xochimilco, used chinampas. Chinampas was prepared delimiting with stakes narrow and rectangular strips in marshy lakes. Among them channels were constructed to Straits so that the canoes circulated. One chinampa prepared with layers of aquatic vegetation coming from the lake and mud of the bottom.


One of the greatest contributions to this culture was its calendar. The solar calendar, that except for secondary differences, was very similar to the one of the Mayans. The year was divided in 18 months of 20 days each one, in addition to 5 days complementary that were considered of suerte.Los months bad they divided simultaneously in 4 weeks of 5 days.


Its system of numeration was vigesimal, and seems to have turn out of the use like element to calculate, of the foot and fingers, as they demonstrate the own names to it of the numbers. The numerical signs were points, rays, circles and fingers.


The Aztecs invented a pictográfica writing, whose signs represented, schematically, the objects or suggested the idea of them easily. This rudimentary writing evolved, and some signs, little by little, acquired a phonetic value, that is to say, they did not represent already what they expressed like drawing, but the sound of the words. This mixture of ideográficos elements with phonetic elements complica the interpretation of the writing of the mexica. The Tlachtli was the popular game of ball that inherited like tradition of the Mayans. It was a religious character set and two teams of 5 players played. He consisted of making only pass a ball of rubber through a hoop put in vertical form in a wall striking it with the elbows, knees and hips, the captain of the losing equipment was sacrificed by the desire of the Gods.


They had a tempered climate, which was very benefico since was not nor very warm, nor very cold which gave many possibilities.


Deer of White Tail, Wolf, Rabbit, Aguila, Serpents, Hares, birds, ETC


Medecinales flowers, plants, pumpkin, maize, frijol, carrot and diverse tuberculos.

Location: Azteca or Mexica, member of a town that dominated to the center and the south of present Mexico, in Mesoamérica, from century XIV to the century XVI and that is famous by to have established a vast empire highly organized, destroyed by the Spanish conquerors and their allies tlaxcaltecas.





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