The most highly acclaimed history of Mexico.
ut much the greater number, probably, spread over the region of Central America and the neighbouring isles; and the traveller now speculates on the majestic ruins of Mitla and Palenque as possibly the work of this extraordinary people.
After the lapse of another hundred years, a numerous and rude tribe, called the Chichemecs, entered the deserted country from the regions of the far North-west. They were speedily followed by other races, of higher civilisation, perhaps of the same family with the Toltecs, whose language they appear to have spoken. The most noted of these were the Aztecs, or Mexicans, and the Acolhuans. The latter, better known in later times by the name of Tezcucans, from their capital, Tezcuco, on the eastern border of the Mexican lake, were peculiarly fitted, by their comparatively mild religion and manners, for receiving the tincture of civilisation which could be derived from the few Toltecs that still remained in the country. This, in their turn, they communicated to the barbarous
This is absolutely one of the best history books I've ever read and it's all the more remarkable in that this great scholar, William Hickling Prescott, was legally blind and never saw the country about which he wrote so vividly. Cortez and the people of the nations of Mexico come alive as they never have in any other history of the conquest I've read. Marvelous book and highly recommended.
This excellent history of the Aztecs and their downfall leaves me with the certainty that history (and the Spaniards) did right in this case. The Aztec were a mixture of wild customs and stolen technology that never got it right how to govern an empire.
Sadly, we'll never know much about the Toltecs that left their tech to the Aztecs. One of the biggest book burnings in history, performed by the Spaniards, has prevented this.
Anyway, read this unbelievable story of a general against an empire; it's a classic.