The Aztecs, 3rd Edition
December 2011, ©2011, Wiley-Blackwell
- A thorough examination of Aztec origins and civilization including religion, science, and thought
- Incorporates the latest archaeological excavations and research into explanations of the Spanish conquest and the continuity of Aztec culture in Central Mexico
- Expanded coverage includes key topics such as writing, music, royal tombs, and Aztec predictions of the end of the world
List of Tables xiv
Guide to Pronunciation and Spelling xviii
1 The Aztecs of Mesoamerica 1
Who Were the Aztecs? 3
Mesoamerican Context 5
The Aztec Environment 7
Sources of Information 12
Art History 27
Aztec Studies Today 28
2 The Rise of Aztec Civilization 30
Pre-Aztec Civilizations 33
The Aztlan Migrations 36
Toltecs, Chichimecs, and Aztec Identity 39
The Growth of City-States: The Early Aztec Period 40
Tenochtitlan and Empire: The Late Aztec Period 46
3 People on the Landscape 60
How Many Aztecs? 61
The Aztec Diet 65
Farming Systems 69
Rural Settlement 77
The Rural Landscape 81
4 Artisans and their Wares 82
Utilitarian Crafts 82
Luxury Crafts 94
Otumba: An Aztec Craft Center 103
5 The Commercial Economy 108
Material Evidence for Aztec Commerce 119
A Complex Economy 124
6 Family and Social Class 127
Growing up Aztec 128
Adult Life and Social Roles 131
Social Classes 134
Nobles and their Palaces 143
7 City-State and Empire 152
Relations Among City-States 159
The Empire of the Triple Alliance 163
Imperial Strategies and Control 165
Mexica Propaganda and the Limits of Empire 177
8 Cities and Urban Planning 179
City-State Capitals 180
Provincial Cities and Towns 184
9 Creation, Death, and the Gods 197
Myths of Creation 198
Aztec Religion: Historical Background 201
The Gods 204
Death, Burial, and the Afterlife 211
10 Temples and Ceremonies 217
Human Blood Offerings 219
The Templo Mayor 225
Public Ceremonies 235
Private Rituals 239
11 Science, Writing, and Calendars 244
Calendars and Astronomy 249
12 Art, Music, and Literature 263
Literature and Poetry 271
Music and Dance 274
13 Final Glory, Conquest, and Legacy 278
The Final Century: 1428–1519 279
Conquest by Spain 282
The Nahuas under Spanish Rule 290
Continuity and Change 296
The Aztec Legacy: Modern Nahua Indian Culture 298
The Aztec Past and the Mexican Present 300
A Wider Perspective 303
Glossary of Nahuatl Terms 337
- Deborah L. Nichols, Dartmouth College
"Top archaeologist Michael Smith combines the latest
archaeological research outside the imperial capital with insights
from the ethnohistorical sources to present a well-balanced and
dynamic view of Aztec society."
- Elizabeth Boone, Tulane University
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