Aztec Indians

Aztec Indians or Aztecs is a term used for ethnic groups that lived in the area of central Mexico in the 14th, 15th and 16th century. To be more exact, Aztec indians were mainly the ones that spoke Nahuatl language. When refering to Aztec indians we are also generaly refering to ethnic group that started and controled the Aztec empire. Empire which achieved political and military cotrol of a large parts of the territory that is today know as Mexico and Latin America.

The term Aztez indians is also often used to specificaly name the people that lived in the Aztec capital and one of the largest cities of the time - Tenochtitlan (you can see some pictures and maps of Tenochtitlan).

If we are taking a broader look, Aztec indians can also include inhabitants of Tenochtitlan's two principal allied city-states, the Acolhuas of Texcoco and the Tepanecs of Tlacopan. These two cities together with Tenochtitlan formed an Aztec Triple Alliance. This Aztec indians alliance was foundation for what is today known as Aztec Empire.

In the most broad sense, term Aztec indians can refer to all the various Nahua city states and their people. They shared common cultural habits, common history and most of them also spoke the Nahuatl language.

Did You Know Atzec Indians Actually Called Themselves Mexica?

It is interesting that term Aztecs indians actually came from English and Spanish language. The seven original tribes of Aztec indians lived in Aztlán under the foreign rule. Tribes later escaped Aztlán looking for new lands to settle. Tribe called Mexicas were the last to leave and when they did their god Huitzilopochtli forbid them to ever again call themselves Azteca. Azteca was the name of their former masters. Instead they called themselves Mexìcâ.

Aztecatl in fact simply means someone who comes from Aztlán.

So the term Aztec indians does not represent any real tribe, nor did the tribes that are today described as Aztec indians ever see themselves as a unified ethnic group. This is also evident from the fact that today we have Mexico and Mexico City that both originate from Mexica and not from Aztec indians.