The Mighty Empire
by: Kristina A
Once in the tropics of Central America an empire of mighty people lived. The mighty empire, called the Aztecs, lasted a long time, but like all empires it fell to it enemies.
Like other mighty empires, the Aztecs had to start some where. Though the origins of the Aztecs are uncertain, today it is believed that Aztecs originated from a nomadic tribe in northern Mexico. Before long they came to settle in what is now the country of Mexico, and their empire stretched into modern day Central America.
As the Aztecs civilized, they established laws for their daily life. The laws of the Aztecs were adequate. Adultery was a crime punishable by death. Other acts of crime included stealing, murder and being publicly drunk, which was punishable by death. Although the laws of the Aztecs were harsh, there were exceptions to the law. For example, a person wouldn't be put to death for being publicly drunk if they were over the age of 70 or at a festival. The laws also allowed divorces in certain cases. In addition, to their laws their religious beliefs and sacred calendar governed all of their everyday choices.
Their family life was just a structured as the laws. Relatives would arrange marriages. In general Aztecs married young. Most of the time the men were in their 20's while the women were in their mid-teen! As part of the Aztecs customs, old widows were listen to and well respected.
The Aztecs are remembered by their numerous accomplishments. They created many tools for life including numerous weapons, a calendar using complex math, aqueducts, but their greatest accomplishment was their temples. The Aztecs used slaves to build amazing pyramids in the middle of no where. Today they are considered one of the largest stone structures in the western hemisphere.
This amazing empire of mighty people fell in a drastic and sad way. The Aztecs were
overpowered and by the Spanish conquistadores. Smallpox also played a roll in the fall of the Aztecs. It silently wiped out thousands. After a bravely fought battle, the Aztecs were defeated in 1521 by Henan Cortés. The battle left the empire in ruins.
However, the sprit of the Aztecs still lives on though their descendants. These descendants of the Aztecs are called Nahua. Today over a million and a half Nahua live in rural Mexico.
Although the Aztecs fell in the most drastic way, they will always be remembered as the mighty empire that once lived in Central America.
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