Mr. Dowling
God, Gold, and Glory

To what extent did the quest for "God, Gold and Glory" contribute to the Spanish conquest of the Aztecs and the Incas?

As early as 1493, Spanish colonists sailed to the islands Columbus had discovered in the Caribbean.

Conquistadors-conquerers who let the exploration and conquest of the Americas during the 1500s.

Spanish Conquistadors were deeply committed to their faith. They were also committed to sharing it with nonbelievers, hoping to convert them to Christianity.

Missionaries-people sent to spread religion in another land. Missionaries hoped to convert Native Americans to Christianity.

Aztec Empire

Spanish colonists in Cuba heard it was an area of gold and wealth.
Hernando Cortes was sent to explore the area and take the riches.
1519-600 conquistadors with priests landed in Vera Cruz, Mexico and claimed the land for Spain.
The Aztec emperor (Montezuma) was told of Cortes's approach. Montezuma remembered an Aztec legend of a God who used to rule the land. One day he left in a great canoe, but promised to return. Montezuma believed that Cortes might be the Aztec God. He welcomed Cortes and his people with gifts. The Spanish lived in Tenochtitlan for several months without any problems until Aztec human sacrifices scared them. Then the Spanish, fearful of their lives, attacked.
Even though the Spanish have superior weapons, they were no match for the Aztecs.
Cortes regroups with Native Americans who were enemies of the Aztecs.
Cortes finally conquered the Aztec empire in 1521.

The Incas

Francisco Pizarro-attempts to conquer the Incas.
He tried to convert the emperor but it did not work. Pizarro and his crew grew angry, kill thousands of Incas and take their ruler as a prisoner.
The ruler gave them gold to let him go. Pizarro agreed, took the gold, then killed the ruler.
By 1535, they controlled the entire empire.

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