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Dona Marina Essay

752 words - 4 pages

Doña Marina was of great importance, she was obeyed with no questions by all Natives through all of New Spain. She came from a family high power within the Aztec/Nahua ancestry. Dona Marina was later in life captured by Hernado Cortes. She soon made it clear that Cortes needed her. Dona Marina became a very important asset to Cortes and a very important figure in history. In the beginning she was known as La Malinche.
La Malinche’s parents were chiefs and Caciques of a town known as Painala. Dona Marina was then known as La Malinche, her birth name. After her father died while she was still young, her mother married a young man named Cacique. Cacique and La Malinche’s mother had a son together. They seemed to love their son so much and so they decided that he should succeed them in office after they had passed. As to have no difficulties for their son, they sold their daughter into slavery. To cover up her daughter’s disappearance, her mother took the body of a dead slave and buried it; claiming it as her own daughter. La Malinche was now a slave of the Mayan cacique of Tabasco.
Some years later, the hapless Tabasco tribe was overtaken by Cortes. The Spaniards took all the Tabasco’s belongings, including their slaves. Now La Malinche was the possession of Cortes. She, with twenty other Native women, was sent to be cooks for the Spanish. La Malinche soon proved to be worth much more than a slave cook. Due to La Malinche’s circumstances she knew the native languages and, making her an important asset to the Spaniards.
La Malinche served as Cortes’ translator, negotiator, and cultural mediator. La Malinche was also Cortes’ concubine. A concubine is a woman who lives with a man but has lower status than his wife. Later in history La Malinche gave birth to a son. This was also the son of Cortez.
When Cortes took the 20 slaves from the Tabasco tribe, La Malinche’s unique knowledge of Nahua, Aztec, and Mayan dialects caught Cortes’ attention. Another translator had already been chosen as a part of Cortes’ entourage. This translator was a Spanish priest named Geronimo de Aguilar. Aguilar was captured and imprisoned by the Mayans for multiple years and had learned the language. However,...

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