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date: 16 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the Mexica origin myth based on indigenous cartographic accounts, hieroglyphic texts deciphered by modern scholars, and interpretations offered by chroniclers and historians. These sources recount how the Mexicas arrived from northwestern Mesoamerica around A.D. 900 accompanied by other clans, with whom they shared ethnic and cultural ties. In a time of social and political upheaval, they formed an unprecedented political organization ruled by military leaders who established rulership by violent conquest and alliance-building, including marriage alliances, with other rulers. Ultimately, the despotic force of the Mexica conquerors compelled their subjects to join forces with the Spanish, leading to the fall of Tenochtitlan and the Mexica Empire.

Keywords: Mexica, conquest, marriage alliances, origin myth, political organization

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