The colonization of the Aztecs

By MrsRice
  • 1502

    Architecture

    Architecture
    Aztec architecture incorporated the use of a grid system in city building and the construction of large temples in the shape of a pyramid. The Templo Mayor was built and added to over a period of time from 1427-1502. Aztecs homes for common people were made of interlocking wood and sometimes adobe bricks with dirt floors. The upper class homes were usually more elaborate and were decorated with artwork to honor the gods.
  • 1518

    Women's work

    Women's work
    Women were expected to work in the household and care for the family. For example, women were tasked with caring for young children, preparing meals, and repairing clothing. Some women worked as artisans or craftspeople and sold their creations in the many different markets that were so important to the Aztec economy.​ The women in the picture is preparing maize, or corn, for a meal.
  • 1518

    Men's Work

    Men's Work
    Commoners or middle class men worked as farmers. Some men worked as artisans and sold their goods at market. The commoners were also required to work to build and maintain the temples and public buildings in Tenochtitlan. Some men worked as long distance traders and they carried goods from vast distance across the Aztec Empire. All Aztec men were expected to serve time in the military. Noble class men were trained from a very young age to serve as high priests or in government positions.
  • 1518

    Education

    Education
    All children attended schools where they were taught the traditions and history of their people. In fact, education was free for all people regardless of their social class. At first, Aztec children were taught by their parents until they were in their teens when they attended schools.​ Boys' school focused on warfare or government (depending on social status) and girls were instructed in housekeeping. Girls would also be taught the religious traditions and history of the Aztec Empire.
  • 1518

    Life Expectancy

    Life Expectancy
    The average life expectancy of an Aztec person was 19-34 years old. The would marry young with boys being about 19 and girls being about 13. The also had a high infant mortality rate even though they were advanced in many areas of medicine.
  • Nov 8, 1519

    Spanish conquest of the Aztecs

    Spanish conquest of the Aztecs
    Cortés and the Spanish arrived at the city of Tenochtitlan. Moctezuma II, believed that Cortés might be Quetzalcoatl, an Aztec god, and gave the Spanish many gifts and allowed them to stay as guests in the Aztec capital. After some time and a few attacks by Aztecs on Spanish soldiers, Cortés became fearful that Moctezuma II may order his death and took the Aztec leader captive. The conquest of the Aztec Empire by the Spanish conquistadors had begun.
  • 1520

    Women's work

    Women's work
    The majority of conquistadores were single men who married or made concubines of the natives and were even encouraged to do so by Queen Isabella during the earliest days of colonization. They were still expected to continue their roles as wife, mother, cleaner, and cook but now they received no education at all. Some women took up roles as translators, the most famous of them Dona Marina who became the mistress of Cortes.
  • 1520

    Men's Work

    Men's Work
    The Spanish conquerors in Mexico during the early colonial era lived off the labor of the Aztecs. The "natives" were enslaved and were forced into the encomienda system were they had to give the fruits of their labors to their Spanish rulers. Many men were forced to work in silver mines that were discovered.
  • 1520

    Life Expectancy

    Life Expectancy
    After the Spanish conquest, the life expectancy of people in some rural Mexican villages dropped to as low as 15 years because of exposure to diseases brought by the Spaniards. The population of Tenochtitlan was reduced by 40% less than a year after Cortes and his men showed up. Many Aztecs died in enslavement or were killed in battle also.
  • 1531

    Education

    Education
    The Aztec education system was abolished and replaced by a very limited church education given by Catholic missionaries who also campaigned against cultural traditions of the Aztecs.
  • 1573

    Architecture

    Architecture
    The Spaniards built churches and missions in the Spanish style in order to inspire awe in its colonized people as well has have good spaces for military endeavors. The Metropolitan Cathedral is in Mexico City. The monarchs of Spain also dictated how the city streets would be laid out and where the building would stand.