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The Aztec Civilization Essay

1251 words - 6 pages

The Aztecs were a very warlike people, but were very influential to our civilization. They lived in present day Mexico about 800 years ago. At first, they were a mostly nomadic civilization and that lasted about 100 years. Then they developed the first, and capital, city, Tenochtitlán. They developed many new types of government, religion, culture, technology, economy, and geography, as well as the calendar and new mathematical techniques. The Aztecs were skilled writers, builders, artists, and craftsmen. They wrote in pictures, built towering temples for worship, and made beautiful jewelry and pottery.
Government was set up in a similar way to ours. Their was an emperor, like our president, a city council, like our Supreme Court, the Calpulli, like our mayors and governors, and then the family and individual group, like our citizens. Cities formed alliances to avoid being attacked. A very famous "Triple-Alliance" was formed in the Aztec era. The alliance was between Tenochtitlán, Texcoco, and Tlacopan. These 3 cities never attacked each other, but banded together to conquer other cities. In all cities, people payed taxes called tributes. Tributes could be anything that could be used to trade, since their was no known form of currency.
Aztec religion was very different from ours. Gods were worshipped to such an extent that even times were named after them. There were also many religious theories as to how the world was created. The most prominent one was the theory that the world was created in 5 tries. It was said that the first creator, Tezcatlipoca, failed and became a jaguar. The same was said for the next 3 tries, in which the gods became the wind and 2 floods. The sun was made this way by the final god, Nanauatl. By this time, the world was created. The. The god Ehecatl sacrificed people to make the wind blow the sun so it would move.
Aztec culture was very thought-provoking. The clothing people wore was based on their wealth, like today's, but if you were found wearing the wrong clothing, you were punished. The poor and ordinary people wore clothing made of cactus fibers. Yet the rich wore clothes made of cotton and long robes. The rich had shoes, while the ordinary people didn't. The rich also wore beautiful and costly jewelry. The emperors wore beautiful headdresses and had turquoise jewelry, a true luxury then. The food the Aztecs ate was not very much. They had sweet corn tortillas, vegetables, occasionally meat, and most of their food was spicy. If you could afford it, you drank hot chocolate, but most drank water and cactus beer. Cactus beer was called pulqué. Entertainment consisted of many games like our. They played one game called Tlachtli, like basketball. The object was to hit a rubber ball through a stone ring, but you could only use your hips, elbows, and knees. Another game was called Patolli, like backgammon, they used dried beans as dice and colored stones as counters. Art was themed in the Aztec...

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