In Mexico, Archaeologists Reveal a Story of Cannibalism and Conquest

After the Aztecs sacrificed and ate a Spanish-led caravan in 1520, Hernán Cortés’ forces retaliated by massacring women and children.

By Livia Gershon, Smithsonianmag

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - During the Spanish Conquest of Mexico, interactions between the Aztecs and the European colonizers were often marked by horrifying atrocities. Now, reports the Associated Press, archaeologists have unearthed a nightmarish new chapter in that story.

In early 1521, the year after the Aztecs captured and cannibalized a convoy of dozens of Spaniards and hundreds of allied Indigenous people, Spanish forces responded by massacring Aztec women and children.

Researchers with Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) have long known about the cannibalism that took place in the town of Zult . . .

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