Lost It All! What Happened To The Ancient Aztecs’ Gold and Silver?
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The Aztecs were an incredibly wealthy people, amassing a huge fortune in gold and other valuables. So what happened to all their wealth? It’s pretty simple, really – they spent it all.
The Aztecs were always generous with their gifts and tributes, giving away gold and other precious items to those who they thought deserved it. This generosity was one of the things that made them so popular and successful as a people. However, it also meant that they constantly had to replenish their supplies of gold.
Why is there no gold left?
Over time, as the Aztecs’ wealth grew, so did their spending. They began to build massive temples and palaces made of solid gold, which required even more gold to maintain. They also started gifting larger and more lavish items to VIPs and others in power.
With all this spending, it’s no surprise that the Aztecs eventually ran out of gold. And without any new sources of income, they quickly lost their status as one of the richest empires in the world.
The True Values of Gold, Silver, and Copper in Mesoamerica
The native peoples of Mesoamerica had a long-standing tradition of valuing gold, silver, and copper. These metals were not just seen as valuable commodities, but as symbols of power and status. For the Aztecs, gold represented the sun god, silver was associated with the moon goddess, and copper represented the planet Venus.
The Aztecs believed that these metals had been gifted to them by their gods and that they had a sacred duty to care for them. They took great care in mining and smelting these metals, and used them to create beautiful works of art and jewelry.
Sadly, the Aztecs’ wealth was largely destroyed when the Spanish conquistadors invaded their homeland in the 16th century. The Spaniards plundered the Aztecs’ temples and palaces, melting down their gold and silver treasures to ship back to Spain. Much of the Aztecs’ legacy was lost forever.
How Discoveries in the 1990s Changed Everything We Thought We Knew About Aztec Economics
Before the 1990s, it was thought that the Aztec economy was based on tribute and plunder. However, discoveries in the 1990s showed that the Aztec economy was actually much more complex. The Aztecs had a system of trade that allowed them to get goods from other parts of Mesoamerica. They also had a tax system that generated revenue for the state. The Aztecs also developed credit and banking systems. This allowed them to borrow money and pay for goods over time.
What Happened to the Aztecs’ Wealth?
When the Spanish conquistadors arrived in Mesoamerica in the early 16th century, they found a land that was rich in resources. The Aztecs were a powerful people who had built an empire on the backs of their hard work and ingenuity. However, all of that changed when the Spanish came.
The Spanish were interested in only one thing: gold. They looted the Aztec temples and palaces, taking everything they could find. They also forced the Aztecs to work in their gold mines, extracting as much of the precious metal as possible. Within a few years, the Spanish had amassed a huge fortune at the expense of the Aztecs.
The Aztecs’ wealth was not only looted by the Spanish, but it was also destroyed. In 1521, the Spanish sacked Tenochtitlan, razing the city to the ground. All of the Aztecs’ wealth – their gold, jewels, artwork, and other valuables – was lost in the destruction. The Aztecs never regained their former glory or wealth and were forever changed by the experience of colonization.
Challenging Our Sense of Reality: Aztec Economics for a New Age
Aztec economics was based on a system of trade and tribute that allowed the Aztecs to accumulate vast wealth. However, this system ultimately proved to be their downfall, as the Spanish conqueror Cortez exploited it to destroy the Aztec empire.
The Aztecs controlled a large empire that included many different city-states. Each city-state was required to pay tribute to the Aztec capital, Tenochtitlan. This tribute took the form of goods and materials, which the Aztecs then redistributed to other members of their empire. In this way, the Aztecs were able to amass large quantities of wealth.
However, this system also made the Aztecs very vulnerable to outside forces. When the Spanish conquistador Cortez arrived in Mexico, he quickly realized that he could use the Aztecs’ own tribute system against them. Cortez enlisted the help of other indigenous peoples who were resentful of Aztec rule, and together they attacked Tenochtitlan.
The Spanish looted the city’s wealth, and with that came down the Aztec civilization .This event highlights how dependent the Aztecs were on their tribute system – without it, their empire quickly crumbled.
Was there more than one hoard of Aztec silver?
When the Spanish conquistadors arrived in Mexico in the 16th century, they were amazed by the Aztec civilization. The Aztecs had built a great empire, with beautiful cities and temples. They also had a lot of wealth, in the form of gold and silver.
The Spanish took all of this gold and silver for themselves, and it is estimated that they stole about $1.5 billion worth of Aztec treasure. This was a huge loss for the Aztecs, and it contributed to their decline as a civilization.
There may have been more than one hoard of Aztec silver, as the Aztecs had several mines and smelters. But whatever the case, the Spanish got their hands on a lot of Aztec treasure, and it is now gone forever.
Are there parallels between ancient Aztec economics and modern western economics?
There are many parallels between ancient Aztec economics and modern western economics. Both systems relied heavily on trade, both had a complex system of taxation, and both had a currency system based on gold and silver.
However, there are some key differences between the two systems. For instance, the Aztec economy was largely based on agriculture, while the western economy is based on industry and service sector jobs.
Additionally, the Aztec tax system was much more progressive than the modern western tax system; upper-class citizens paid higher taxes than lower-class citizens.
And it is important to note, while the Aztec currency system was based on gold and silver, it also included other precious metals like copper and jade which are easier to obtain in the modern world, and thus aren’t used as much in currencies anymore, so that wealth was lost to technological advancements and time.