THE CONQUISTADORS by Patricia-Ed. & Trans.  Fuentes


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Once again Hernan Cortes' first bloodless conquest of Tenochtitlan, wonder-city of the Aztecs, and the bloody reconquest that subsequently annihilated an entire civilization are recorded. But this time the point of view is that of first-hand reporters and eyewitnesses. Three of the accounts here are by prime figures of historical importance (Cortes, Pedro de Alvarado, and Andres de Tapia), while four accounts are by men remembered more for what they said than did. The anonymous Conquistador's anoramic account contains many acute observations of manners and customs, and is, in ethnic sense, the most fascinating chapter. His description of the modes of human sacrifice are unforgettable. Much of the material in Conquistadors is unavailable in the U.S. except as presented here in new (sometimes first) translations. Cortes' conquest was for gold for the empty coffers of Charles V, and this he sent home in abundance. He was awarded supreme command of the territory and went about Christianizing the tribes in a fairly civilized way. Later, his power was usurped by Nuno de who was responsible for the greatest crimes. Perhaps ""the horrors of human sacrifice"" justified the overthrow of the Aztec Empire. One account describes there sacrifices as festive experiences for very devout, willing victims. Many of them are expectedly gripping.

Publisher: Orion Press