A report on MexicoMesoamerica and Aztecs

Mesoamerica and its cultural areas
The Aztec Empire in 1519 within Mesoamerica
Ballgame court at Monte Albán
Aztec metal axe blades. Prior of the arrival of the European settlers, see: Metallurgy in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica
Depiction of the founding myth of Mexico-Tenochtitlan from the Codex Mendoza. The eagle perched on a cactus has been incorporated into the Mexican flag since its independence, and was a motif in colonial-era art.
A pair of swinging Remojadas figurines, Classic Veracruz culture, 300 to 900 CE.
Large ceramic statue of an Aztec eagle warrior
Page 9 of the Dresden Codex (from the 1880 Förstermann edition)
A page from the Codex Boturini depicting the departure from Aztlán
View of the Pyramid of the Sun of Teotihuacan with first human establishment in the area dating back to 600 BCE
El Mirador flourished from 600 BCE to 100 CE, and may have had a population of over 100,000.
The Valley of Mexico with the locations of the main city states in 1519
Cultivation of maize, shown in the Florentine Codex (1576) drawn by an indigenous scribe, with text in Nahuatl on this folio
Landscape of the Mesoamerican highlands
The coronation of Motecuzuma I, Tovar Codex
1945 mural by Diego Rivera depicting the view from the Tlatelolco markets into Mexico-Tenochtitlan, the largest city in the Americas at the time
Yojoa Lake in Honduras.
Ahuitzotl in Codex Mendoza
Hernán Cortés and his multilingual cultural translator, Doña Marina ("Malinche"), meeting Moctezuma II from the Lienzo de Tlaxcala, a document created ca. 1550 by the Tlaxcalans to remind the Spanish of their loyalty and the importance of Tlaxcala during the conquest of the Aztec Empire.
Tikal is one of the largest archaeological sites, urban centers, and tourist attractions of the pre-Columbian Maya civilization. It is located in the archaeological region of the Petén Basin in what is now northern Guatemala.
The meeting of Moctezuma II and Hernán Cortés, with his cultural translator La Malinche, 8 November 1519, as depicted in the Lienzo de Tlaxcala
Smallpox depicted by an indigenous artist in the 1576 Florentine Codex
Olmec Colossal Head No. 3 1200–900 BCE
"The Martyrdom of Cuauhtémoc", (1892) painting by Leandro Izaguirre
View of the Plaza Mayor (today Zócalo) in Mexico City (ca. 1695) by Cristóbal de Villalpando
Pyramid of the Moon viewed from atop of the Pyramid of the Sun.
Folio from the Codex Mendoza showing a commoner advancing through the ranks by taking captives in war. Each attire can be achieved by taking a certain number of captives.
New Spain was essential to the Spanish global trading system. White represents the route of the Spanish Manila Galleons in the Pacific and the Spanish convoys in the Atlantic. (Blue represents Portuguese routes.)
Xochicalco, Temple of the Feathered Serpent, 650–900 CE
Jaguar warrior uniform as tax pay method, from Codex Mendoza
Silver peso mined and minted in colonial Mexico, which became a global currency
Detail of the Nunnery Quadrangle at Uxmal, 10th century
Folio from the Codex Mendoza showing the rearing and education of Aztec boys and girls in an ages list, how they were instructed in different types of labor, and how they were harshly punished for misbehavior
Viceroyalty of New Spain following the signing of the 1819 Adams-Onís Treaty
Mesoamerica and Central America in the 16th century before Spanish arrival
Pre-Hispanic "Tepeyac" Road of city-state of Tlatelolco ruins with semi-underground unidentified small and simply built buildings, probably houses (left). Tlatelolco archaeological site.
Luis de Mena, Virgin of Guadalupe and castas, showing race mixture and hierarchy as well as fruits of the realm, ca. 1750
Examples of the diversity of maize
The maximal extent of the Aztec Empire
Father Hidalgo used this banner of the Virgin of Guadalupe as their emblem
The Aztec Empire in 1512
Cultivation of maize, the main foodstuff, using simple tools. Florentine Codex
Siege of the Alhondiga de Granaditas, Guanajuato, 28 Sept. 1810.
K'inich Kan B'alam II, the Classic period ruler of Palenque, as depicted on a stele
Typical Aztec black on orange ceramic ware
Flag of the Army of the Three Guarantees, the force formed by ex-royalist Iturbide and insurgent Vicente Guerrero in February 1821
Illustration that recreates the structures of the archaeological site of Yarumela or El Chircal in Honduras, this place reflects the Olmec influence that existed in Central America in the pre-classic period.
Diorama model of the Aztec market at Tlatelolco
Flag of the First Mexican Empire under Agustín I, 1822-23, with the eagle wearing a crown
"Head Variant" or "Patron Gods" glyphs for Maya days
A folio from the Codex Mendoza showing the tribute paid to Tenochtitlan in exotic trade goods by the altepetl of Xoconochco on the Pacific coast
Flag of the First Republic of Mexico, with the eagle without a crown, signaling the new republic
The emblem glyph of Tikal (Mutal)
Map of the Island city of Tenochtitlan
General Antonio López de Santa Anna
One of the earliest examples of the Mesoamerican writing systems, the Epi-Olmec script on the La Mojarra Stela 1 dated to around 150 CE. Mesoamerica is one of the five places in the world where writing has developed independently.
Mexico-Tenochtitlan urban standard, Templo Mayor Museum
Portrait of Liberal President Benito Juárez
The xoloitzcuintle is one of the naguales of the god Quetzalcoatl. In this form, it helps the dead cross the Chicnahuapan, a river that separates the world of the living from the dead.
Great Temple in Historic center of Mexico City
The Execution of Emperor Maximilian, 19 June 1867. Gen. Tomás Mejía, left, Maximiian, center, Gen. Miguel Miramón, right. Painting by Édouard Manet 1868.
Zapotec mask of the Bat God.
The deity Tezcatlipoca depicted in the Codex Borgia, one of the few extant pre-Hispanic codices
President Porfirio Díaz linking himself to independence hero Hidalgo and liberal hero Juárez September 1910.
Ritual human sacrifice portrayed in Codex Laud
Aztec cosmological drawing with the god Xiuhtecuhtli, the lord of fire in the center and the four corners of the cosmos marked by four trees with associated birds, deities and calendar names, and each direction marked by a dismembered limb of the god Tezcatlipoca. From the Codex Fejérváry-Mayer
Francisco I. Madero, who challenged Díaz in the fraudulent 1910 election and was elected president when Díaz was forced to resign in May 1911.
A small ceremonial ballcourt at Uaxactun.
The "Aztec calendar stone" or "Sun Stone", a large stone monolith unearthed in 1790 in Mexico City depicting the five eras of Aztec mythical history, with calendric images.
Revolutionary Generals Pancho Villa (left) and Emiliano Zapata (right)
Ballgame marker from the classic Lowland Maya site of Chinkultic, Mexico depicting a ballplayer in full gear
Ritual human sacrifice as shown in the Codex Magliabechiano
General Álvaro Obregón (far left) shown with a cigar in his left hand and his right arm missing, center with the white beard is First Chief Venustiano Carranza
The Avenue of the Dead in Teotihuacan, an example of a Mesoamerican settlement planned according to concepts of directionality
Ma (hand) and pach (moss). In Nahuatl, handmoss is synonym of raccoon.
Logo of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, which incorporates the colors of the Mexican flag
Art with ideological and political meaning: depiction of an Aztec tzompantli (skull-rack) from the Ramirez Codex
Frame drum huehuetl played by a youth in Aztec-themed costume in Amecameca, State of Mexico, 2010
Pemex, the national oil company created in 1938 for reasons of economic nationalism; it continues to provide major revenues for the government
Holy Spirit Grotto
Page from the pre-Columbian Codex Borgia a folding codex painted on deer skin prepared with gesso
NAFTA signing ceremony, October 1992. From left to right: (standing) President Carlos Salinas de Gortari (Mexico), President George H. W. Bush (U.S.), and Prime Minister Brian Mulroney (Canada)
Joya de Cerén
The Coatlicue statue in the National Museum of Anthropology
Zapatista leader Comandanta Ramona
Tazumal
Aztec feather shield displaying the "stepped fret" design called xicalcoliuhqui in Nahuatl (c. 1520, Landesmuseum Württemberg)
Vicente Fox and his opposition National Action Party won the 2000 general election, ending one-party rule.
Casa Blanca
Codex Kingsborough, showing the abuse by Spaniards of a Nahua under the encomienda Spanish labor system
Topographic map of Mexico
San Andres
Depiction of smallpox during the Spanish conquest in Book XII of the Florentine Codex
Mexico map of Köppen climate classification
Cihuatán
José Sarmiento de Valladares, Count of Moctezuma, viceroy of Mexico
Mexican wolf
Sculpture of "The Acrobat" from Tlatilco
Motecuhzoma II's Teocalli of the Sacred War emblem, this depiction mythologically describes the reason when Aztecs searched an eagle on a cactus hunting a rattlesnake for begin the new city, the founding myth of Mexica.
Gray whale
Pyramid of the archaeological site of La Venta 1000-400 BCE
Tezontle is a material for elements in architectural styles.
The National Palace on the east side of Plaza de la Constitución or Zócalo, the main square of Mexico City; it was the residence of viceroys and Presidents of Mexico and now the seat of the Mexican government.
Cuicuilco 800–600 BCE
Virgin of Guadalupe and the symbols of the founding of Tenochtitlan, Josefus De Ribera Argomanis. (1778)
Andrés Manuel López Obrador President of Mexico
The partly excavated main structure of San José Mogote 1500–500 BCE
Monument to Cuauhtémoc, inaugurated 1887 by Porfirio Díaz in Mexico City
Alfonso García Robles diplomat who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1982
Monte Albán, Building J in the foreground. 200 BCE – 200 CE
Detail of Diego Rivera's mural depicting the Aztec market of Tlatelolco at the Mexican National palace
A Mexican Navy Eurocopter
Great Goddess of Teotihuacan 200–500 CE
President Porfirio Díaz in 1910 at the National Museum of Anthropology with the Aztec Calendar Stone. The International Congress of Americanists met in Mexico City in 1910 on the centennial of Mexican independence.
Demonstration on 26 September 2015, in the first anniversary of the disappearance of the 43 students in the Mexican town of Iguala
A reconstruction of Guachimontones, flourished from 200 to 400 CE
Metro Moctezuma, with a stylized feathered crown as its logo
The territorial evolution of Mexico after independence: secession of Central America (purple), Chiapas annexed from Guatemala (blue), losses to the U.S. (red, white and orange) and the reannexation of the Republic of Yucatán (red)
Temple of the Owl, Dzibanche 200–600 CE
Las Tortilleras, an 1836 lithograph after a painting by Carl Nebel of women grinding corn and making tortillas.
A proportional representation of Mexico's exports. The country has the most complex economy in Latin America.
Acanceh, 200–300 CE<ref>{{cite web|url=http://www.mesoweb.com/features/acanceh/history.html|title=Mesoweb Articles|work=mesoweb.com}}</ref>
Chapulines, grasshoppers toasted and dusted with chilis, continue to be a popular delicacy.
Historical GDP per capita development of Mexico
Mask located on the "Temple of the Masks" Kohunlich c. 500 CE
Urban standard details; Mexico-Tenochtitlan wall remnants stone bricks in Templo Mayor Museum (Mexico City)
Mexican Stock Exchange building
Main palace of Palenque, 7th century AD
The Mask of Xiuhtecuhtli; 1400–1521; cedrela wood, turquoise, pine resin, mother-of-pearl, conch shell, cinnabar; height: {{convert|16.8|cm|in|abbr=on}}, width: {{convert|15.2|cm|in|abbr=on}}; British Museum (London)
Telmex Tower, Mexico City.
K'inich Janaab Pakal I of Palenque 603–683 AD
The Mask of Tezcatlipoca; 1400–1521; turquoise, pyrite, pine, lignite, human bone, deer skin, conch shell and agave; height: {{convert|19|cm|in|abbr=on}}, width: {{convert|13.9|cm|in|abbr=on}}, length: {{convert|12.2|cm|in|abbr=on}}; British Museum
The Central Eólica Sureste I, Fase II in Oaxaca. The Isthmus of Tehuantepec is the region of Mexico with the highest capacity for wind energy. (see Tehuantepecer, a strong wind that affects the region)
Copan Stela H commissioned by Uaxaclajuun Ubʼaah Kʼawiil 695–738 AD
Double-headed serpent; 1450–1521; Spanish cedar wood (Cedrela odorata), turquoise, shell, traces of gilding & 2 resins are used as adhesive (pine resin and Bursera resin); height: {{convert|20.3|cm|in|abbr=on}}, width: {{convert|43.3|cm|in|abbr=on}}, depth: {{convert|5.9|cm|in|abbr=on}}; British Museum
Guillermo Haro Observatory in Cananea, Sonora.
Jaina Island type figure (Maya) 650–800 AD
Chalchihuite relief of Ehecatl Temple; basalt; overall: {{convert|31.4|x|33.82|cm|in|abbr=on}}; discovered in August 2005 during repairs on the Mexico City Cathedral's floor; Ehecatl Temple in Cathedral archeological site (Mexico City)
Cancun and the Riviera Maya is the most visited region in Latin America
Cacaxtla, Mural depicting the Bird Man 650–900 AD
Page 12 of the Codex Borbonicus, (in the big square): Tezcatlipoca (night and fate) and Quetzalcoatl (feathered serpent); before 1500; bast fiber paper; height: {{convert|38|cm|in|abbr=on}}, length of the full manuscript: {{convert|142|cm|in|abbr=on}}; Bibliothèque de l'Assemblée nationale (Paris)
The Baluarte Bridge is the highest cable-stayed bridge in the world, the fifth-highest bridge overall and the highest bridge in the Americas.
Chichen Itza, Temple of the Jaguars 900–1000 AD
Aztec calendar stone; 1502–1521; basalt; diameter: {{convert|3.58|m|ft|abbr=on}}; thick: {{convert|98|cm|in|abbr=on}}; discovered on 17 December 1790 during repairs on the Mexico City Cathedral; National Museum of Anthropology (Mexico City)
El Cajon Dam
Governor's Palace rear view and details, 10th century CE, Uxmal
Underground Great Temple's Chacmool statue; 1440–1469; painted earthenware; length: {{convert|1.26|m|ft|abbr=on}}; Templo Mayor (Mexico City)
Mexican states by population density
Codz Poop, 7th–10th centuries CE Kabah
Tlāloc effigy vessel; 1440–1469; painted earthenware; height: {{convert|35|cm|in|abbr=on}}; Templo Mayor Museum (Mexico City)
Las castas. Casta painting showing 16 racial groupings. Anonymous, 18th century, oil on canvas, 148×104 cm, Museo Nacional del Virreinato, Tepotzotlán, Mexico.
Sayil, three-story palace, 600–900 CE
Kneeling female figure; 15th–early 16th century; painted stone; overall: {{convert|54.61|x|26.67|cm|in|abbr=on}}; Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York City)
Colonial caste painting of Mexican family in Viceroyalty of New Spain
Chichen Itza, "Temple of Three Dintels" 600–1000 CE
Frog-shaped necklace ornaments; 15th–early 16th century; gold; height: {{convert|2.1|cm|in|abbr=on}}; Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York City)
Octavio Paz was awarded the 1981 Miguel de Cervantes Prize, the 1982 Neustadt International Prize for Literature, and the 1990 Nobel Prize in Literature.
Palace of Mitla, Oaxaca 12th century
The Coatlicue statue in the National Museum of Anthropology
Our Lady of Guadalupe, patron saint of Mexico. This painting of her at the Basilica of Guadalupe is among her most notable depictions. Scientists debate if it should be dated 1531, the year of the first apparition was said to appear, or the 1550s.
The Calendar temple of Tlatelolco, 1200 CE
Cathedral of Zacatecas
Detail of page 20 from the Codex Zouche-Nuttall, 14–15th century
General Hospital of Mexico in Mexico City.
Pectoral mixtec, Shield of Yanhuitlan.
Central Library of the National Autonomous University of Mexico
Aztec sun stone, early 16th century
Olga Sánchez Cordero, Minister of the Interior (Gobernacion) in President López Obrador's cabinet
A small ceremonial ballcourt at Tikal.
Palacio de Bellas Artes (Palace of Fine Arts), with murals, other artwork, and a major performance space
Mexican Muralism. A cultural expression starting in the 1920s created by a group of Mexican painters after the Mexican Revolution.
Monument to Cuauhtémoc, Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City (1887)
Teotihuacán, State of Mexico
The colonial-era Cathedral Mexico City dominates one side of the main square of the capital
Museo Soumaya in Mexico City building
David Alfaro Siqueiros by Héctor García Cobo at Lecumberri prison, Mexico City, 1960.
Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, "The Tenth Muse." Posthmous portrait Juan Cabrera
Actress Dolores del Río, Hollywood star in the 1920s and 1930s and prominent figure of the Golden Age of Mexican cinema in the 1940s and 1950s
Mole sauce, which has dozens of varieties across the Republic, is seen as a symbol of Mexicanidad and is considered Mexico's national dish.
Portrait of composer Carlos Chávez by Carl van Vechten
Azteca Stadium, Mexico City.
Logo for the 1968 Mexico Olympics
Plaque in Mexico City commemorating Lucha libre as an intangible cultural heritage
View of the Pyramid of the Sun of Teotihuacan, the first human establishment in the area dating back to 600 BCE
View of the Pyramid of the Sun in the ancient city-state of Teotihuacan, which was the 6th largest city in the world at its peak (1 AD to 500 AD)
Temple of Kukulcán (El Castillo) in the maya city of Chichen Itza
A proportional representation of Mexico's exports. The country has the most complex economy in Latin America.
Storming of the Teocalli by Cortez and his Troops (1848)
Telmex Tower, Mexico City.
New Spain was essential to the Spanish global trading system. White represents the route of the Spanish Manila Galleons in the Pacific and the Spanish convoys in the Atlantic. (Blue represents Portuguese routes.)
The Baluarte Bridge was the highest cable-stayed bridge in the world, the fifth-highest bridge overall and is the highest bridge in the Americas.
Map of the First Mexican Empire
Central Library of the National Autonomous University of Mexico
Students in a burned bus during the protests of 1968
Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, two of the most famous mexican artists
Pico de Orizaba, the highest mountain in Mexico
Palacio de Bellas Artes (Palace of Fine Arts), with murals, other artwork, and a major performance space
Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of the Congress of Mexico
Alfonso Cuarón, the first mexican filmmaker to win the Academy Award for Best Director
Andrés Manuel López Obrador President of Mexico
Televisa headquarters in Mexico City
Headquarters of the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs
El Santo, one of the most iconic Mexican luchadores
Mexican Federal Police celebration.
Mexico City, the financial center of Mexico
Mexican Stock Exchange building
Large Millimeter Telescope in Puebla.
The Baluarte Bridge is the highest cable-stayed bridge in the world, the fifth-highest bridge overall and the highest bridge in the Americas.
Lake Chapala is Mexico's largest freshwater lake.
Regional variation of ancestry according to a study made by Ruiz-Linares in 2014, each dot represents a volunteer, with most coming from south Mexico and Mexico City.
Map for the year 2000 of the indigenous languages of Mexico having more than 100,000 speakers.
Mexico–United States barrier between San Diego's border patrol offices in California, USA (left) and Tijuana, Mexico (right)
Secretary of Health, Mexico City, Mexico.
Central Library of the National Autonomous University of Mexico
Frida Kahlo, the most famous woman artist in Mexican history.
Palacio de Bellas Artes (Palace of Fine Arts), with murals, other artwork, and a major performance space
Octavio Paz was awarded the 1990 Nobel Prize in Literature
Azteca Stadium, Mexico City.
El Santo, one of the most famous and iconic Mexican luchadores

The Aztecs were a Mesoamerican culture that flourished in central Mexico in the post-classic period from 1300 to 1521.

- Aztecs

It extends from approximately central Mexico through Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and northern Costa Rica.

- Mesoamerica

In particular, the Mesoamerican region was home to many intertwined civilizations; including the Olmec, Maya, Zapotec, Teotihuacan, and Purepecha.

- Mexico

Last were the Aztecs, who dominated the region in the century before European contact.

- Mexico

Towards the end of the post-Classic period, the Aztecs of Central Mexico built a tributary empire covering most of central Mesoamerica.

- Mesoamerica

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Nahuatl

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Language or, by some definitions, a group of languages of the Uto-Aztecan language family.

Language or, by some definitions, a group of languages of the Uto-Aztecan language family.

Tree diagram of the relation between the Nahuan languages and the rest of the Uto-Aztecan language family, based on the internal classification of Nahuan given by Terrence
Page 51 of Book IX from the Florentine Codex. The text is in Nahuatl written in the Latin alphabet.
Map showing the areas of Mexico where Nahuatl is spoken today
The Aztecs called (red) tomatoes xitōmatl, whereas the green tomatillo was called tōmatl; the latter is the source for the English word tomato.
The place names Mapachtepec ('Raccoon Hill'), Mazatlan ('Deer Place') and Huitztlan ('Thorn Place') written in the Aztec writing system, from the Codex Mendoza
Page of Book IV from the Florentine Codex. The text is in Nahuatl written in the Latin alphabet.
Illustrated alphabet of the Nahuatl, Aztec or Mexicano language.

Varieties of Nahuatl are spoken by about 1.7 million Nahua peoples, most of whom live mainly in Central Mexico and have smaller population in the United States.

It was the language of the Aztec/Mexica, who dominated what is now central Mexico during the Late Postclassic period of Mesoamerican history.

Starting in the 1970s, scholars of Mesoamerican ethnohistory have analyzed local-level texts in Nahuatl and other indigenous languages to gain insight into cultural change in the colonial era via linguistic changes, known at present as the New Philology.

An expressive orange-ware clay vessel in the Toltec style, from the American Museum of Natural History collection.

Toltec

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An expressive orange-ware clay vessel in the Toltec style, from the American Museum of Natural History collection.
Pyramid C at Tula, Hidalgo
Tempo Tlahuizcalpantecuhtl (Pyramid B) is the largest and best known structure at the archaeological site of Tula. Atlantean figures are situated on the apex of the pyramid.
Stucco relief at Tula, Hidalgo depicting Coyotes, Jaguars and Eagles feasting on human hearts.
Carved relief of a jaguar at Tula, Hidalgo
Depiction of an anthropomorphic bird-snake deity, probably Quetzalcoatl at the Temple of Tlahuizcalpantecuhtli at Tula, Hidalgo
View of the columns of the burned palace at Tula Hidalgo. The second ballcourt is in the background.
Toltec warriors represented by the famous Atlantean figures in Tula.

The Toltec culture (/ˈtɒltɛk/) was a pre-Columbian Mesoamerican culture that ruled a state centered in Tula, Hidalgo, Mexico during the Epiclassic and the early Post-Classic period of Mesoamerican chronology, reaching prominence from 950 to 1150 CE.

The later Aztec culture saw the Toltecs as their intellectual and cultural predecessors and described Toltec culture emanating from Tōllān (Nahuatl for Tula) as the epitome of civilization; in the Nahuatl language the word Tōltēkatl (singular) or Tōltēkah (plural) came to take on the meaning "artisan".

Nahua children in traditional clothes

Nahuas

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The Nahuas are a group of the indigenous people of Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua.

The Nahuas are a group of the indigenous people of Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua.

Nahua children in traditional clothes
Number of Nahuatl speakers per state, according to the 2000 Mexican census
Current distribution of Nahuatl variants
Ceramic sculpture of Nahua deity from Puebla
"Atlantean figures" from the Nahua culture of the Toltecs at Tula.
Depiction of Tlaxcaltec soldiers leading a Spaniard to Chalco from Lienzo de Tlaxcala
Depiction of Tlaxcaltecs and Spanish at the founding of the Colonial Province of Tlaxcala in 1545.
Nahua man of Morelos ploughing a bean field by mule

The Mexica (Aztecs) were descended of Nahua ancestry, and the Toltecs are often thought to have been as well, though in the pre-Columbian period Nahuas were subdivided into many groups that did not necessarily share a common identity.

Through their integration in the Mesoamerican cultural area the Nahuas adopted many cultural traits including maize agriculture and urbanism, religious practices including a ritual calendar of 260 days and the practice of human sacrifices and the construction of monumental architecture and the use of logographic writing.

With the achievement of Mexican independence in 1821, the casta system, which divided the population into racial categories with differential rights, was eliminated and the term "Indian" (indio) was no longer used by government, although it continued to be used in daily speech.

Mexico City

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The city was the place of Mexico-Tenochtitlan, the Aztec capital.
Storming of the Teocalli by Cortez and his Troops (1848)
Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral's (1571–1813) 18th century painting. The cathedral was built by the Spaniards over the ruins of the main Aztec temple.
Mexico City in 1628
Palacio de Mineria, Mexico City. The elevation of silver mining as a profession and the ennoblement of silver miners was a development of the eighteenth-century Bourbon Reforms
A painting of the American assault on the Chapultepec Castle.
Mexican President and later dictator Porfirio Díaz (second from right) commissioned many of the ornate European style buildings constructed from the 1890–1910 and hoped for Mexico City to eventually rival European cities like Paris in opulence
Corpses in front of the National Palace during the Ten Tragic Days. Photographer, Manuel Ramos.
Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera house in San Ángel designed by Juan O'Gorman, an example of 20th-century Modernist architecture in Mexico
Students in a burned bus during the protests of 1968
First ladies Paloma Cordero of Mexico (left) and Nancy Reagan of the United States (right) with U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, John Gavin observing the damage done by the 1985 earthquake.
Satellite image of Mexico City
Trajineras in the canals of Xochimilco. Xochimilco and the historic center of Mexico City were declared a World Heritage Site in 1987.
Air pollution over Mexico City. Air quality is poorest during the winter.
The Chapultepec was an important park during the Aztecs whose access had been limited to its nobility, was declared open to the public by a decree of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor in 1530, it is one of the world's largest city parks.
Lightning in the background of the Torre Mayor
Growth of Mexico city's area from 1900 to 2000
Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Villa de Guadalupe, the main Catholic pilgrimage site in the Americas. It houses the original image of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Secretariat of Health building
Central Campus of the University City of the UNAM. Since 2007 the University City is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The National Palace of Mexico
Senate of the Republic
Legislative Palace of San Lázaro
Offices of the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs
Mexico City's Legislative Assembly building
The 16 boroughs of Mexico City
Federal Police headquarters in Mexico City
The Paseo de la Reforma is a wide avenue designed by Ferdinand von Rosenzweig in the 1860s and was modeled after the Champs-Élysées in Paris.
Palacio de Hierro store
The Turibus runs through many of the most important tourist attractions in the city.
The Art Nouveau/Neoclassical Palacio de Bellas Artes is the prominent cultural center in the city
Receptions Hall at the Museo Nacional de Arte
lReconstruction of the entrance to the Hochob temple in the National Museum of Anthropology
Museo Soumaya
The City Theatre built in 1918.
A guajolota, a tamale torta invention.
Televisa headquarters in Mexico City
Azteca Stadium, the 21st largest stadium in the world
Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez
Mexico City Arena
Mexico City Metro
Metrobús rapid transit bus stop station at Indios Verdes
The Anillo Periférico and Paseo de la Reforma in Miguel Hidalgo
Bicycles available for rental in Zona Rosa
Mexico City International Airport
Felipe Ángeles International Airport
Santa Fe is one of the centers of greatest economic activity in the city.
Central de Abasto is one of the two large wholesale markets in Mexico City, along with the Nueva Viga market, which specializes in fish and seafood.
Biblioteca Vasconcelos
Street tacos in Mexico City
A pesero or microbús

Mexico City (Ciudad de México, ; abbr.: CDMX; Nahuatl: Altepetl Mexico) is the capital and largest city of Mexico, and the most populous city in North America.

The area was the destination of the migrations of the Teochichimecas during the 8th and 13th centuries, people that would give rise to the Toltec, and Mexica (Aztecs) cultures.

When the Spaniards arrived, the Aztec Empire had reached much of Mesoamerica, touching both the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean.

Aztec Empire

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Alliance of three Nahua altepetl city-states: Mexico-Tenochtitlan, Tetzcoco, and Tlacopan.

Alliance of three Nahua altepetl city-states: Mexico-Tenochtitlan, Tetzcoco, and Tlacopan.

Maximum extent of the Aztec Empire
First page of the Codex Boturini, showing the migration of the Mexica.
Maximum extent of the Aztec Empire
Maximum extent of the Aztec Empire
Jaguar warriors in a flowery war from the Codex Zouche-Nuttall
Maximum extent of the Aztec Empire
Map of the expansion of the empire, showing the areas that have been conquered by the Aztec rulers.
The maximal extent of the Aztec Empire, according to María del Carmen Solanes Carraro and Enrique Vela Ramírez.
The Valley of Mexico at the time of the Spanish Conquest.
The Aztec Empire in 1519.
Codex Azcatitlan depicting the Spanish army, with Cortés and Malinche in front
Cristóbal de Olid led Spanish soldiers with Tlaxcalan allies in the conquests of Jalisco and Colima of West Mexico.
A tlacochcalcatl pictured in the Codex Mendoza. Mexico-Tenochtitlan kept the city-states under threat de facto just by military brute force.
The Huēyi Teōcalli ruins in Mexico-Tenochtitlan remnants, present-day Historic center of Mexico City.
Ehecatl Temple in the foundations of the Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral, Historic center of Mexico City.
This page from the westernized Codex Tovar depicts a scene of gladiatorial sacrificial rite, celebrated on the festival of Tlacaxipehualiztli.
The Nahuas placed Techcatl, the Aztec sacrifice altar, in the sacrifice paving, and the courtyard on the south side of Huēyi Teōcalli.
Aztec Empire territorial organization in 1519
Double Quetzalcoatl statues in the Huēyi Teōcalli ruins.
Coyolxauhqui killed after she tried kill her mother disc, sacrifice paving in the courtyard on the south side, Huēyi Teōcalli ruins.
The five Tlaloquê as depicted in the Codex Borgia.

The alliance controlled most of central Mexico at its height, as well as some more distant territories within Mesoamerica, such as the Xoconochco province, an Aztec exclave near the present-day Guatemalan border.

The word "Aztec" in modern usage would not have been used by the people themselves.

The Maya area within Mesoamerica

Maya civilization

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The Maya area within Mesoamerica
Remains in Joya de Cerén, a Classic-era settlement in El Salvador buried under volcanic ash around 600 AD. Its preservation has greatly helped in the study of everyday life in a Maya farming community.
Maya area
Stela D from Quiriguá, representing king Kʼakʼ Tiliw Chan Yopaat
Calakmul was one of the most important Classic period cities.
Chichen Itza was the most important city in the northern Maya region.
Zaculeu was capital of the Postclassic Mam kingdom in the Guatemalan Highlands.
Mayapan was an important Postclassic city in the northern Yucatán Peninsula.
Page from the Lienzo de Tlaxcala showing the Spanish conquest of Iximche, known as Cuahtemallan in the Nahuatl language
Drawing by Frederick Catherwood of the Nunnery complex at Uxmal
1892 photograph of the Castillo at Chichen Itza, by Teoberto Maler
Stela from Toniná, representing the 6th-century king Bahlam Yaxuun Tihl
Classic period sculpture showing sajal Aj Chak Maax presenting captives before ruler Itzamnaaj Bʼalam III of Yaxchilan
Lintel 16 from Yaxchilán, depicting king Yaxun Bʼalam in warrior garb
The Puuc-style Labna gateway. The passage is formed by a corbel arch, a common element in Maya architecture.
Reconstruction of the urban core of Tikal in the 8th century AD
Fired bricks with animal designs from Comalcalco. Made from brick since there was a lack of readily available stone, it is unique among major Maya sites.
Terminal Classic palace complex at Sayil, in northern Yucatán
Temple I, at Tikal, was a funerary temple in honour of king Jasaw Chan Kʼawiil I.
Model of a triadic pyramid at Caracol, Belize
Map of Mayan language migration routes
Pages from the Postclassic period Paris Codex, one of the few surviving Maya books in existence
Maya script on Cancuén Panel 3 describes the installation of two vassals at Machaquilá by Cancuén king Taj Chan Ahk.
Ceramic vessel painted with Maya script in the Ethnologisches Museum, Berlin
Reading order of Maya hieroglyphic text
Representation of an astronomer from the Madrid Codex
Relief sculpture of a decapitated ballplayer, adorning the Great Ballcourt at Chichen Itza
Maize was a staple of the Maya diet.
The Museo Nacional de Arqueología y Etnología, in Guatemala City

The Maya civilization was a Mesoamerican civilization developed by the Maya peoples, and noted for its logosyllabic script—the most sophisticated and highly developed writing system in pre-Columbian Americas—as well as for its art, architecture, mathematics, calendar, and astronomical system.

The Maya civilization developed in the area that today comprises southeastern Mexico, all of Guatemala and Belize, and the western portions of Honduras and El Salvador.

The territory of the Maya covered a third of Mesoamerica, and the Maya were engaged in a dynamic relationship with neighbouring cultures that included the Olmecs, Mixtecs, Teotihuacan, the Aztecs, and others.

Bernardino de Sahagún

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Fray Bernardino de Sahagún
Title page, Psalmodia Christiana, 1583
Aztec warriors as shown in the Florentine Codex.

Bernardino de Sahagún (c. 1499 – 5 February 1590) was a Franciscan friar, missionary priest and pioneering ethnographer who participated in the Catholic evangelization of colonial New Spain (now Mexico).

He learned Nahuatl and spent more than 50 years in the study of Aztec beliefs, culture and history.

During the first decades of the Spanish conquest of Mesoamerica, many indigenous people converted to Christianity, at least superficially.