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18th March, 1325 was founded the city of Tenochtitlan

TenochtitlanOn the 18th of March, 1325 on an island in Lake Texcoco by the Aztecs was founded the city -state of Tenochtitlan. If we open a map, we can see that now in this place is located the capital of Mexico - Mexico City.

Tenochtitlan was founded by Nahua tribe and soon became the capital of a mighty empire. At first, the Aztecs hunted and fishing, led a nomadic life. According to an ancient legend, the god of the sun and war, Huitzilopochtli commanded the Indians to settle in the place where they saw an eagle perched on a cactus and held a snake. Over 130 years the Aztecs wandered in North America before it was chosen place for the foundation of Tenochtitlan.

If we study an ancient map of the world we will see that it was the largest and most populous city in the world: to 1500 its area was 13.5 sq. km, and had a population of 500,000 inhabitants. Within the city there were many channels, so the townspeople had to move on boats, as in modern Venice. City center was connected to the mainland by three dams. From floods the city was protected by a stone dam.

Despite the fact that Tenochtitlan was built on the water, there was a well-developed agriculture. Aztecs managed to artificially create a field using mud and algae. This land was characterized by exceptionally fertile, sometimes crop harvested up to 7 times a year.

In the center of the town was located ceremonial center where stood two church towers 30 m each church in the form of pyramids connected by a wall. Temples were built for the gods Tlaloc and Huitzilopochtli, in whose honor local people sacrifice: a stone knife cut the heart from a living person and was burned in a ceremonial bowl and then the body threw to the foot of the temple.

Aztec rulers lived in palaces, which were built near the temples and were surrounded by magnificent gardens. Ordinary citizens were living in one-storey buildings constructed of twigs, silt and clay. Also in the city there were numerous outbuildings and schools.

In 1519 Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes arrived on the Gulf Coast. The Spaniards were amazed at the splendor of the city of the Aztecs. In 1521 after 70 days of siege, Tenochtitlan fell, the Aztec emperor Montezuma II was killed and the city - destroyed. So fell the Aztec empire, which lasted more than two centuries.

In 1521 on the ruins of Tenochtitlan was founded Mexico City, which in 1524 received the status of the capital of New Spain , became the political and cultural center of Mexico. Spanish rule lasted over 300 years.

Modern map of the world shows that Mexico is currently ranked eighth largest cities in North America.

This Day in History 18-03-2014