The Aztecs

Eli Whitney Museum

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for ages 9-12

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2023 Summer Program

The Aztec present a fascinating and often misunderstood history and legacy. Even the name "Aztec" was derived from German explorer Alexander von Humboldt as he was describing the powerful Mesoamerican people who encountered the Spanish in 1519. The world may now know them as the Aztec, but these people referred to themselves as the Mexica. To better understand the Mexica people and their culture before their eventual conquest by Spain in 1521, we will examine what is undoubtedly their greatest achievement: the city of Tenochtitlan.

Rising from the shallow waters of Lake Texcoco Tenochtitlan was the jewel in the crown of the Aztec Empire. With a population of 400,000 people Tenochtitlan was the largest City in the New World. In comparison, only Paris, Venice, and Constantinople in Europe were larger. Join us as we study the daily lives and class structure of the people of this great city with a week of weaving, pottery, crafting, and recreating the great sites of Tenochtitlan.

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