The Conquest of the Aztecs by Cortes

TLDR Cortes leads a group of Spanish conquistadors to the New World in search of gold and riches, recruiting a diverse group of men with various skills and aspirations. With the help of La Malinche, a Nahua woman who serves as his interpreter, Cortes defies his orders and decides to conquer the Aztecs, establishing a town on the coast and appointing himself Chief Justice and Captain General.

Timestamped Summary

00:00 Cortez persuades his men to join him on an expedition to vast and wealthy lands, promising great rewards and riches, and invoking the name of God.
04:42 Cortez is given complicated instructions by Velazquez, including spreading Christianity, charting the coast, finding a shortcut to China and India, searching for Amazons and people with dog-like features, and discovering gold, but he is not explicitly told to conquer the lands.
09:07 Cortes immediately goes beyond his instructions and recruits a ruthless and charismatic man named Pedro de Alvarado, along with his faction, to join him on the voyage to find gold and riches.
13:20 The Spanish conquistadors, led by Cortes, are a diverse group of Southerners from Spain with various skills and aspirations, including becoming hidalgos, and they possess technological advantages over the Aztecs such as swords, horses, and ships.
17:36 The Spanish conquistadors encounter the locals in the New World, who tell them about a white Christian man named Geronimo de Aguilar who had been shipwrecked and captured by the Mayans, while another Spaniard named Gonzalo Guerrero had assimilated into Mayan culture and refused to join the Spanish expedition.
21:53 La Milinche, a Nahua woman who was sold into Mayan slavery, becomes a crucial asset to Cortez as she can speak both the local language and Spanish, and is one of the 20 slave girls given to the Spaniards by the people of Potanchan.
26:52 La Milinche becomes a crucial interpreter for Cortez, translating between the indigenous people and the Spanish, and also plays a role in encouraging Cortez to conquer the Mexica.
31:39 La Malinche, who is both a victim and a manipulator, plays a crucial role in Cortez's conquest of the Aztecs by serving as his translator and relaying his offers during negotiations with native peoples.
36:02 Cortes presents Tendile with gifts, including an armchair, which Tendile regards with contempt, and Cortes organizes a demonstration of Christianity, which includes reading a legal document that asserts Spain's authority over the natives and their obligation to convert to Christianity.
40:51 Cortes demonstrates the Spanish firepower to Tendile, including cannons and horses, and expresses his desire to meet the emperor and see the capital, but Tendile refuses and there is a fatal exchange where Cortes asks about gold and Tendile confirms they have lots of it, although modern historians are skeptical of the idea that the Aztecs thought the Spanish were gods.
45:07 Cortes disobeys his orders and decides to go inland to find the city for himself, gathering his men and convincing them to establish a town on the coast, which he names Villa Rica de la Vera Cruz, and appoints himself Chief Justice and Captain General, thus giving himself legal sanction and indemnity against prosecution.
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