Thursday, May 07, 2020

"Tenochtitlan: The Venice of Mesoamerica": a simulation of what a 15th Century visitor to the center of the Aztec world would have seen, and it was all taken from them by the Spaniards

Reconstruction of Tenochtitlan2006

Invicta presents “Tenochtitlan, The Venice of Mesoamerica”, an animated illustrated presentation (8 min) of the city built on a lake, now where Mexico City starts, lasting about a century, to be drained by the Spaniards early in the 16th Century.

The city was actually a union of two communities, each with its own temples.  The city had four major causeways going to the mainland and extensive dikes and flood control There were major temple centers, businesses, and residences, and around 200,000 people lived here.

To the conquering Spaniards, this would have seemed like an alien planet. And the reverse was true, as indigenous populations experienced “alien” conquest in the middle of the previous millennium.

The lack of permanence of their advanced civilization is certainly a warning for all of us.

The picture from Wikipedia (click to see attribution and CCSA) shows a model from the Museum of Anthopology in Mexico City, which I actually visited on Labor Day weekend in 1974, just before moving into Greenwich Village in New York City.

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