Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Aztecs” as Want to Read:
The Aztecs
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Aztecs

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  50 ratings  ·  8 reviews
This is a history of one of the best known peoples of pre-Columbian America. The Aztecs were the upstarts of Meso-America. Until the thirteenth century they were a little-known people practising subsistence agriculture in the north of what is now Mexico. At that time they migrated to the Valley of Mexico, and having first learnt military arts by hiring themselves as mercen ...more
Published (first published 1996)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Aztecs, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Aztecs

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 112)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
'Nothing but flowers and songs of sorrow
are left in Mexico and Tlatelolco ..."
-Aztec poem

Is there anything irreversibly repugnant about a social life so fully integrated with the monthly practice of cutting out the hearts of finely adorned victims selected to play the parts of Gods, in a holocaust on a massive scale? The smell of blood on the steps to the sun in Mesoamerica. Can this blood dry the wilted flowers of songs of sorrow in time to be preserved and sung anew, fresh and happy in all the
While certainly not the most exciting book you will ever read, if you have any interest whatsoever in Mesoamerica cultures, then you will find elements of this book interesting. The parts about social constructs within the culture as well as religious rituals are especially riveting. Photographs, diagrams, and illustrations are included.
Useful information on the Aztec life - some history, interpretation of pictography, plenty of archaeological evidence backing up the text. Topics include warfare, merchants, artisanship, gender roles, myths, daily life. Not that much info on various festivals and celebrations.

I particularly recommend it because the author himself participated in many of the digs that he refers to. Both he and his wife are obviously very passionate experts on the subject. Many of the photographs he refers to were
Esther Buddenhagen
This is a combination of excellent anthropology and history written by a guy who really knows his stuff and immerses the reader in the definitely different world of the Aztecs. Definitely worth reading. Mesoamerica is a world that is alien to most Norteamericanos, and this is a crime. We should immerse ourselves in our shared ancestors and relish the experience. This book is a fine place to start.
This is a textbook; it's not light reading. But it's also the most authoritative account I could find of Aztec culture, and it's very informative. If you can find a more readable book with the same quality of info, I'd love to hear about it; otherwise, this will at least get the job done.
Townsend and smith disagree on some point, but then this is still a growing subject and you can kind of expect that.
This text offers a good introduction to the culture of the Aztecs as well as excellent illustrations.
This book is very informative and interesting--it's not nearly as dry as most textbooks!
Molloy marked it as to-read
Dec 26, 2014
Mark marked it as to-read
Dec 16, 2014
Megan marked it as to-read
Nov 04, 2014
Carlotta marked it as to-read
Oct 18, 2014
Brooke added it
Sep 13, 2014
aquariusdc marked it as to-read
Aug 16, 2014
Graham added it
Jul 16, 2014
David Calderwood
David Calderwood marked it as to-read
Jul 06, 2014
Natasha Brough
Natasha Brough marked it as to-read
Jun 23, 2014
Jake Moran
Jake Moran marked it as to-read
Jun 13, 2014
Ardis marked it as to-read
May 16, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
See also:

Michael E. Smith, author on international relations
Michael E. Smith (Derbyshire)

Michael Ernest Smith (born 1953) is an American archaeologist working primarily with Aztec and general Mesoamerican archaeology. He has written numerous scholarly articles about central Mexican archaeology as well as several books about the Aztecs, among them a widely used textbook (Smith 2003). He is currentl
More about Michael E. Smith...
The Ancient Civilizations of Mesoamerica: A Reader The Postclassic Mesoamerican World The Comparative Archaeology of Complex Societies Aztec City-State Capitals Archaeological Research at Aztec-Period Rural Sites in Morelos, Mexico =: Investigaciones Arqueologicas En Sitios Rurales de La Epoca Azteca En Morelos

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »