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By Mike Vondruska
It Was More Impressive Than Most European Cities At That Time In History
Mexico History –
The following observation was written by one of the first Europeans to lay eyes on this magnificent capital city of the Aztec Empire called, Tenochtitlán. His name was Hernán Cortés, a fortune-seeking Spaniard.
Here are excerpts from a letter to Emperor Charles V of Spain by Cortés who was explaining about the wonders of this very huge organized city built on an island.
“I am fully aware that the account will appear so wonderful as to be deemed scarcely worthy of credit; since even when we who have seen these things with our own eyes, are yet so amazed as to be unable to comprehend their reality . . .
The city is as large as Seville or Cordova; its streets, I speak of the principal ones, are very wide and straight . . .
There are also very wide bridges . . . on many of these bridges ten horses can go abreast . . .
This city has many public squares . . . There is one square twice as large as that of the city of Salamanca (Spain), surrounded by porticoes, where are daily assembled more than sixty thousand souls, engaged in buying, and selling.”
Ok, you get the idea. This city greatly impressed Cortés and his men back in the early 1500s. In fact, some of his men wrote in their own journals that upon viewing this city for the first time from a high ridge overlooking Tenochtitlán, they thought they were dreaming. They could not believe how magnificent it was.
For those curious travelers who are interested in learning about the history of a country, especially about major events (like the “Spanish Conquest” of México), México City has a treasure trove of old historical sites to see and fascinating stories to reveal.
If you are interested in learning more about the Spanish Conquest of México, you can check out our 10 day/9 night tour called, Cortés & The Spanish Conquest of México Tour.
It follows his route from the shores of Veracruz to what is now México City.
This “Journey into History” will be led by one of our México historian guides.
México is full of fascinating history, from ancient times to the invasions from the Europeans, the Mexican/American war with the United States to the Mexican people’s fight for independence from Spain!
See you in México!