Why did we select the Aztecs as our topic?
Asides from being geographically located extremely near the nation [Mexico] that once provided a home to many civilizations, wars, conquerors, and the development of mixed cultures, our group chose to study Aztec history and its religious and cultural system because we were genuinely intrigued by this ancient empire. Although no longer an “active” culture, many Aztec beliefs are rooted deep within many natives of Mexico (perhaps even other surrounding areas) and some people even continue to consider themselves as Aztecs. We wanted to learn about the powerful growth of the Aztec empire and the reasons why they engaged in the type of rituals they practiced, particularly human sacrifice, which appears in many movies but its roots are seldom explained.
Historical background and development of the Aztecs:
The Aztecs (whose name arrives from their homeland Aztlan or White Land) were a highly organized civilization that occupied Mesoamerica and dominated for two centuries until their demise at the hands of the Spanish invasion. As the legend states, while searching for a new land to settle on, the Aztecs saw an eagle perched on a cactus eating a snake and that was sign that this was the land that they should inhabit and settle (“Aztecs”). Thus, they began to build their society; they drained a swampy lake and started to construct their capital city of Tenochtitlan, in 1325 A.D. The city of Tenochtitlan became one of the largest cities in the world and one of the most populated cities ever to exist in Mesoamerica. The land was afflicted with illness and insects but, over time, it was transformed into a flourishing civilization with advanced technology and agriculture. They were greatly influenced by the surrounding societies, especially the Mayans. From the Mayans, they borrowed many aspects and used that to build their society. For the next two centuries, the Aztecs became a dominating power of Mesoamerica (“Aztec...