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Aztecs, Incas, and Mayas
By Samantha Imrich
The three major pre-Columbian civilizations that existed
in Central and South America are the Maya, Aztec, and
Incas. their political structures, religious practices, and
use of slaves.
5.4 Explain why the Aztec and Inca civilizations declined
in the 16th century.
A. the encounters between Cortez and Montezuma
B. the encounters between Pizarro and the Incas
C. the goals of the Spanish conquistadors
D. the effects of European diseases, particularly
smallpox, throughout the Western hemisphere
• They used other tribes as slaves and human sacrifices
to the many gods they believed in.
• The capital of their civilization was Tenochtitlan. It was
built in the middle of a lake surrounded by mountains
which made it harder to find and conquer.
• The Aztec civilization was brought down by a disease
called Small Pox.
• The Maya civilization was on a part of the Mexican coast called the
Yucatan Peninsula.
• Because the Maya civilization was not just one major city it was
much harder for conquistadors to overthrow the Mayas.
• The Mayas had slaves that sometimes could gain their freedom.
• The Inca civilization was on the Andes mountains in Peru
. Also it was in south America
• The capital of the Inca civilization was Cuzco
• They are polytheistic witch means they believe in many
• He traveled with 500 men and 16 horses to conquer the
Aztec people in their capital of Tenochtitlan in 1519
• The Aztecs thought that he was a pale skinned god
called Quetzalcoatl and that their horses were beasts
He traveled with 180 men and 27 horses into Peru to conquer the Inca
He kidnapped Atahualpa and demanded that a room be filled with gold and
silver as a ransom to return Atahualpa
He was a conquistador witch is someone who conquers or takes over by
Atahualpa was the Inca’s leader.
How have Central and South America
changed forever by the conquistadors?
• A lot of Aztec, Inca, and Maya culture and traditions have
disappeared forever because Spanish conquistadors
and explorers killed a lot of people that knew and
followed the traditions of Aztecs, Mayas, and Incas.