Maya and Aztec

Ancient Mesoamerican civilizations






Conquest of Yucatan. General information on the history of the Maya

Category: Maya

1511 – 20 people with Valdivia boarded a boat without a sail, escaping from sinking caravels and without supplies. They drifted 13 days in the sea. Reaching the coast of Yucatan, they fell into the hands of evil cacique, who sacrificed Valdivia and four men, and then hosted a feast of their bodies. Others were put in a cage to fatten. Jeronimo de Aguilar, Gonzalo Guerrero and another 5-6 people broke jail and fled into the woods. They got another cacique, Ah Kin Kutz who was the evil enemy to the first cacique, and who used them as slaves. All, except Aguilar and Guerrero, died. Aguilar escaped with the arrival of Cortez. Guerrero went to Chektamal. There he was received by Na Chan Kan, who commissioned him to guide military affairs. Guerrero married his daughter and took the pagan faith.

1516 – The epidemic of smallpox in the Yucatan.

1517 – The expedition of Francisco Hernбndez de Cуrdoba. The squadron consisted of three small ships with 110 soldiers and sailors on board. First, he arrived at the Island of Women. Then they landed on Cape Kotoch where we had a clash with the Indians. The Spaniards lost in battle 26. There they captured an indian Melchior. From there, the Spaniards sailed to the Gulf of Campeche, where they landed on 23 February, and where they spent three days. March 22 – The Spaniards landed to replenish their water supplies. Attacked by Indians, they quickly retreated. A few days later the ships were in four-day storm and were forced to land on the shore near Champoton. Here was battle with the soldiers of local cacique. The battle lasted about four hours, there were killed 20 Spaniards, two were captured and sacrificed, and 50 people received serious injuries. Cordova himself received 33 wounds. Cordova died soon afterwards from his wounds (on Cuba).

1518 – Expedition of Juan de Grijalva. The squadron, consisting of four well-equipped boats, with two hundred soldiers and sailors on board, sailed on April 8. May 3 – The Spaniards landed on Cozumel island and named it Santa Cruz. Grijalva used the services of an interpreter, the Maya people taken away by Cordoba (Melchior). Then the Spaniards went to the Cape Katoch, and have probably seen the city of Tulum (itself). From there they turned back, along the coast. In Champoton they lost one man killed, 50 wounded. Grijalva himself was wounded by two arrows, and he knocked out half a tooth. Since then, on the Spanish maps the Champoton was named as “The city of evil battle”. In Cuba, the Governor Diego Velazquez dismissed Grijalva from all business and took his possessions. In 1523, aiming to quell the insurgent Indians in Nicaragua, Grijalva died in the first encounter, pierced by Indian arrows.

1519 – Expedition of Hernando Cortez. With 11 ships he sailed from Cuba. With him was a interpreter Melchior. With 10 ships he arrived to the northern coast of Cozumel. One ship, commanded by valet of Velasquez – Francisco de Morla, left the expedition in a storm. The storm had wrecked the steering wheel, and bore unguided ship until dawn, when the sailors saw their steering wheel, diving into the waves. Morla, an excellent swimmer, drove it to the ship. Later, all the ships met on the coast. On Cozumel Spanish pillaged abandoned village. In the forest they found the cacique’s wife with children. Then they persuaded the Indians to return. In one of the temples of the Spaniards put on the cross and the image of the Virgin Mary and persuaded the Indians to Christianity. Upon learning of Spaniards living in captivity among the Indians in six days’ journey Cortes persuaded one Indian to go with the letter. A brigantine and two ships were commanded to go there. Since the Indians stayed longer than the appointed time, the ships returned to Cozumel. The next day the ships set sail, but one of the ship sprang a leak and they had to go back. Aguilar received a letter, swam to the boat through channel between the Yucatan and Cozumel and met with the Spaniards. Guerrero at that time was about 80 leagues away. Cortez again began to preach the worship of the cross, and throw away the idols of the temples. Cortez went from there, going in passing in Campeche, and did not stop until Tabasco.

1526 – November 19 – Francisco de Montejo, handed the king a petition to justify the conquest of Yucatan benefits; on December 8, Emperor Charles V in Granada signed a contract with Montejo.

1527 – May – Montejo fleet left the port of San Lucas de Barameda and went to Santo Domingo. As part of the squadron were four ships: “San Jeronimo”, “Nicholas”, “La Gavarra” and another. There were 250 soldiers, not counting the crew of ships and officers.

In Santo Domingo Montejo loaded food and 53 horses.

September – Arrival at island Cozumel. Cacique of the Island, already familiar with the Spaniards had no resistance.

Near the village of Xelha were founded the first Spanish fort – Salamanca. With the help of residents of Xelha Spaniards quickly erected a temporary residence, the residence of the governor, warehouses, Arsenal and some semblance of fortifications. The selected area was very unhealthy. The Indians were not able for a long time to support and feed the Spanish garrison. Local stony fields gave very poor yields of maize. Spaniards also increased levies and requisitions. Indians in general have Gradually stopped supplying foreigners and fled through the forests. Among the Spaniards began the disease. Montejo has sent small detachments of cavalry throughout the county for getting food and pacification of rebellious Indians. Outposts of Indians appeared at the gates of Salamanca.

November – For two months the Spaniards did not go deep into the mainland, and this was the cause of many diseases and led to the death of 50 soldiers. During the unrest among the colonists of Salamanca, Montejo ordered the burning of their three ships to cut off the retreat. La Gavarra was sent to the West Indies for help.

Leaving 40 patients in Xelha, Montejo with 125 people went to the north. In some villages the Spaniards met peacefully indians carried gifts, food and drink, offered porters and guides. Other indian settlements met them with a hail of arrows and stones from the high fence and palisades. After all the Spaniards were left in peace, indians thouhgt that hunger and disease would complete the destruction. With great difficulty the Spaniards reached the field where they had to leave another 20 patients who were soon murdered by the Indians. After a short rest Montejo went on. In the coastal village of Xamanha they met Ah Naum Pat, Cozumel leader. He gave the Spanish food and boats, as well as acted as mediator in negotiations with the rulers of the province Ek’ab. In the city Ek’ab, the Spaniards were met with fruits and flowers. Spaniards stood here for nearly two months. Recovering from the hardships and collecting information about the surrounding areas, the Spaniards left Ekab and went to Conil and Kachi. But now at every step were met with an ambush of Maya soldiers. Montejo went to Chavak-ha, the provincial capital of Chik’in Chel. Cacique peacefully took the Spaniards, and gave them room for the night. By morning the city was abandoned, and later the Indians attacked the Spaniards. After a brief and fierce battle, in which the Spaniards lost 12 men, the Indians withdrew. The next day, cacique sent ambassadors, but the Spaniards did not understand them because of lack of good translators.

After that, Montejo left Chavak-ha, and moved south into Ak’e. He found the town deserted and plundered it. The next day, the Spaniards had to endure a battle with their new Indians. The battle lasted one and a half days. Were Killed more than 1200 Indians. The Spaniards, too, lost killed and wounded. Many horses and fighting dogs were killed. The Indians fled from the battlefield. Maya at a time of silent were waiting for further developments. With difficulty reflecting attack, Montejo led the remnants of his squad back to Xelha, past the ruins of Chichen Itza. Montejo had brought with him 60 men. Meanwhile, from Santo Domingo arrived a La Gavarra brig with the new colonists, food and equipment.

Past troubles were quickly forgotten, and Montejo has conceived a new campaign, this time south of the peninsula. Up to a hundred people, under the command of Avila, he send along the coast to the south. He took 20-30 soldiers and went by land. About two dozen people remained in the colony. They were on their own to build a sail boat and join Avila. After many days of arduous journey by land Montejo squad got to Chetumal Bay.

The provincial capital city of Chetumal was in two leagues from the coast. On the one hand it was surrounded by the bay, on the other – by lake. A march to town was only possible through a narrow corridor of land. It was here at this moment in the service of a local ruler was Gonzalo Guerrero. Montejo has decided to entice an apostate to his side. However, Guerrero chose to stay with Maya. Under his leadership, the streets and city squares were dug neatly nestled above traps for the Spanish cavalry, and everywhere rose the fence and barricades. Waters of the lake and the Gulf cruised huge flotilla of military boats. Knowing through his spies that Avila is 30 leagues north of Chetumal, Guerrero by agents assured him in a death of Montejo squad and Avila without much doubt hurried back to the north. Soon after he moved a Spanish settlement of Xelha into a more favorable location near the village of Xamanha.

Guerrero managed to convince Montejo thought about the death of Avila vessel on the reefs of the Yucatan coast. Montejo ordered to build a small brigantine, and set his own little party sailed to the mouth of the Ulua (Honduras). From there he returned to Salamanca sea, and saw in Xelha only the ruins of an abandoned Spanish settlement, finally became convinced of the death of Avila. Only on the island of Cozumel Indians told him what had happened, and soon they met with a group of Avila in the new colony at Xamanha.

1528 – mid – Montejo sailed to Mexico, where expected to get help from Cortez. But Cortez at this time had already been removed, and Montejo remained in Mexico.

1529 – rest of the Spaniards, who stayed in Yucatan, near Cozumel, were rescued.

1531 – Montejo began to recruit people and to buy guns and equipment required for the new campaign on the Yucatan. Meanwhile, Alonso de Avila, went to explore the mountain areas of Chiapas. From there, the Spanish squad went through a huge arc through the mountains, forests, rivers and wetlands right into Champoton. MON Kovoh which caused so much trouble to Cordova and Grijalva was already dead and his heirs have met the Spaniards much more friendly. Using this fact, Avila posted to Tabasco urgent report, which talked about his whereabouts and the overall situation in the Yucatan.

Soon came Montejo on several ships with four hundred soldiers. In Campeche was founded the new Spanish colony, once again named Salamanca. Montejo attempted to seize the northern coast of Yucatan. Caciques of provinces Rex Pec and Ah K’in Chel took the Spaniards peacefully. They went from the village to village, providing food and drink. Particularly rich and prosperous country found warlike cheley. When Montejo under the roar of cheers of huge crowds of Indians came into their capital – Tekoh, he decided to found another Spanish settlement. This proposal was met by governor with cold resistance. He politely but firmly advised foreigners search of happiness in the neighboring province Chuaka (Chikinchel), where the land is richer and more populous. Cacique gave them guides. Montejo himself remained in Tekoh.

Montejo the son decided not to camp in Chuaka nor in Ak’e and turned back to the province of the cupula. He won the cacique of the cupula and tried to invade the province of Ek’ab. Cacique of Ek’ab Ek’bosh defeated Spaniards and they quickly went to Chichen Itza, where they received assistance from the newly conquered cacique cupula. In the vicinity of the ruins of Chichen Itza local cacique met the Spaniards peacefully, and even gave his people to help build the first houses in the settlement. It was called Ciudad Real (in the short term they build a settlement, making the wooden houses, and roofs of palm leaves and the long straw, after Indians manner). Montejo-son divided surrounding land and distributed lots to the participants of conquest. In every lots there were 2-3 thousand Indians. In addition to brutal treatment, the oppression of the colonialists was especially unbearable because residents hardly provided food for themselves on depleted lands of Chichen Itza and paying a huge tribute to the Spaniards which meant true starvation. Maya seemed to take this innovation calm, but actually they were ready to defend their freedom. Some settlements have refused to pay tribute, while others went to an open struggle. Communication of Spaniards with the outside world was interrupted, and there was not enough food. Every attempt to escape from the siege led to a skirmish of Indians, in one of it were killed 150 Spaniards and hundreds of ally Indians.

Meanwhile, the governor of Nakon Cupul decided to do everything possible to expel foreigners from their possessions. First of all, he invented stories about the rich gold mines and placers in the southern areas of the peninsula – particularly in Bakalar. And it was a complete success. Montejo ordered Avila with a small detachment (16 horsemen and 50 foot soldiers) and the mine foreman to go to Chetumal via Cochvah and Vaymil (1531). For the discovery of gold had been promised a high reward. In addition, Avila received secret instructions to capture alive or dead traitor Guerrero. Part of the Avila squad finally reached Chetumal by canoe, carrying horses bound in pairs and rowing. They found the town deserted. Spaniards overtook the Indians fled in Chekitakile Chetumal, located several leagues above the coast. Avila attacked the Mayans in Chekintakile where the cacique of Vaymilya, apparently with the help of Guerrero, was preparing for war against the Spaniards. He managed to break the Maya, but the cacique and Guerrero fled. Here they found the first gold. After this event, the uprising swept the region. A revolt were led by Nachankan.

6 months after the founding of Ciudad Real a noble Indian tried to kill Montejo-son and was executed by the Spaniards. His execution was the occasion for an open uprising of Indians. To help the rebels arrived troops from the provinces Ek’ab, Kochvah, Sawtooth and Tas. Cheli and Xiu stayed on the side of the Spaniards. Spaniards had shamefully run away from the beleaguered Ciudad Real. The Spaniards took refuge in thickness of the stone walls of buildings of Chichen Itza and not risked more to appear in neighboring villages. Detachments of cavalry in search of food made periodically desperate raids on outlying besieged city. But everywhere they were met by the spears and arrows of the Maya. Many people were killed in battles, other mowed famine and disease. Finally, the Spaniards fled the town during the night, leaving a dog tied to the clapper, and a bit of bread at a distance that dog could not get it. They went to the north. The Indians have not slept and carefully prepared for the upcoming battle. At dawn, the Maya moved to the city walls. The city met the Indians quiet and with strikes of the bell. One young soldier cautiously made his way to the chapel and then cry with rage swept over the pyramids of Chichen Itza. The Indians went in different directions, cause they did not know which way the Spaniards fled. The Indians overtook the Spaniard with loud cries, but the six knights awaited them on the plains with spears and wounded many of them. One of the Indians grabbed the horse’s leg and held it like a ram. Spaniards arrived in Silan (from it to Campeche 48 leagues) in which the caciques was a young man of Cheley Na Mux Chel, already a Christian and a friend of the Spaniards. Close was Tekoh, and they were under the protection of their ally cacique Chel Poot (mid 1533). Violent attacks of Maya and lack of food and gunpowder drove Montejo and his son troops out, plunging all that is left on the ships, and return to Veracruz. Cacique of Silan and two of his cousins, the sons of cacique of Yobain, accompanied them to Campeche. Cacique of Silan died while coming back.

Meanwhile, Avila reached Chetumal. Suffering severe need of food supplies, Avila sent his messengers to the city with a request to give him honey, maize and poultry, as well as guides to gold deposits. Residents of the city said that foreigners will receive “a bird on the points of spears, and grains of maize on the tips of arrows.” Do not dare to enter in Chetumal, the Spaniards decided to look for gold in the vicinity. At each park connoisseurs of mining were the most thorough investigation – they dug pits, studied samples of local rocks, peering into the bed of streams. Failing notable success in their surveys, Avila planned to settle down for the winter in the Chetumal. After a fierce battle the Spaniards entered the burning city. The losses were great, but the Indians fled. In the house of one of the local lords the Spaniards found the jewels of almost 100 pesos – made of gold and turquoise, pearl inlaid ritual masks. Avila ordered to lay down their loot in a leather bag and accompanied by three riders and three Marines sent all the wealth in the camp of Montejo. Several days later, stopped at the camp near Chinante, a tiny squad was suddenly attacked by the Maya and completely destroyed. Gold returned to its former owner. Avila himself learned about it only after a year.

In Chetumal ten Spaniards have died from disease and wounds shortly after the entry into the city, the other ten were seriously ill. Avila has a total of 8 horses and a little gunpowder. The Indians furiously attacked the foreigners almost every day. This lasted nearly a year. Finally Avila attempted to break in Ciudad Real. As he left the in cover in place two dozen patients who are unable to withstand the hardships of the path. But in the province Cochvah Avila was again surrounded by Indians. The Spaniards, six were killed and dozens wounded. Survivors tortured thirst and hunger. With great difficulty they reached the city Tihozuko. However, all wells were blocked with stones and mud. All day Spaniards purged one of the sources, until finally, unable to drink. The water was such that with every drop they drank a drop of mud. Only here Avila learned that his boss had left the Yucatan. And a depleted squad turned back in Chetumal. Had to be fighting to break through the hostile villages, to overcome the marshy swamp, fight their way through virgin forests. In Chetumal small garrison rushed to meet the squad, believing that Avila is a welcome help. Maya allowed Avila freely to enter the city, and only then renewed their attacks. Since no stock in the camp no longer exists, it was decided to make a raft, loaded on them, all property and people break out of the water in Honduras. The Indians did not expect the appearance of the Spaniards in the Gulf, so they managed to escape from Chetumal. Happy sailing, and in the evenings pestered to the shore and graze the horses on scarce coastal meadows. Many soldiers have died in transit. Almost half the squad was suffering from serious illnesses. Finally, after a difficult and dangerous transition, which lasted nearly seven months, they reached the Spanish colony in Naco (1535).

1533 – a famine in the Yucatan. Drought came. Locusts appeared in over five years.

1536 – Because of this hunger Xiu decided to make a sacrifice at Chichen Itza, and asked permission from Cocom to pass on their land. Cocom cheated their positive response. They put all in a big house and set a fire, killing those who tried to escape.

1539 – Stelea after the end of the twentieth anniversary of “13 Ahau, erected in Evan.

1540 – Montejo handed over power to the conquest of Yucatan to son and no longer participate in hostilities. December 24 Montejo-son went to Champoton with nearly four hundred volunteers went through the river of Tabasco, and drove through the lagoon, Dos Bocas.

1541 – the beginning – when the unsuspecting Spaniards came to the pier Champoton, they were on all sides attacked by the Indians troops. The fight was brief and bloody. Leaving on a battlefield with dozens of dead, foreigners have fled to their ships. A few hours later they took revenge. Seeing as the Indians, removing dead ammunition and clothing, pulled her to himself, began to sing and dance right on the sand, the Spaniards, indignant, returned to shore. Champoton was taken, and its inhabitants retreated to Campeche. He stayed in Champoton. Residents of Champoton kept the Spaniards two years. During this time, Montejo-son could not go forward, so he met strong resistance. Then, after battles with the Indians, moved in Campeche and founded the city of St. Francisco (October 4). At the same time laid the church of Santa Maria de la Concepcion, now the cathedral. The first priest was Francisco Hernandez, a chaplain of Montejo.

With the help of the people of Campeche and Champoton, promising them that they will be rewarded for his great loyalty to the king (although the King has not fulfilled this promise), the Spaniards began the conquest of the province Chak’an and Rex Pec. Despite the fact that the caciques of the dynasty of Pec obedient, most villages have resistance to the Spaniards. Residents threw home, and filled the wells, constantly disturbing the Spanish with attacks.

1542 – January 6, on the ruins of Tihoo was founded Merida.

January 23 – the ruler of Mani Tutul Xiu personally went to Montejo-son, expressed resignation and offered to make available to the Spanish troops, food and women. Tutul Xiu sent to the governor on the Sawtooth Chi Cocom embassy with a proposal to submit to the Spaniards. At Chi Coc ordered to kill the messengers, but the most important, which is sent back to the gouged eyes, that he described as Cocom did with the traitors. After that, troops of provinces Sawtooth, cupula, Kochvah, Ek’ab and Chavak-ha came near to Merida.

June 11 at Merida occurred biggest ever campaign battle that lasted all day. Demoralized Indians returned to their provinces.

End of the year – the Spanish team went to Tekoh and tried to invade the province of the cupula, but met strong resistance, turned to Chavak ha.

1543May 28 – base of Valladolid squad Montejo-nephew.

The second unit went to the Sawtooth, the main military forces that killed at Merida. After a brief resistance by Chi Kok surrendered to the Spaniards and converted to Christianity.

1543 – Captain Sieza took Saki, the capital of the cupula, and executed the priests who attempted to organize resistance. Then were cuptured Ek’ab and Cozumel. After that, the main forces of the Spaniards were thrown against the province Kochvah. Was taken Tishhotsuk, residence at Hume Kochvah.

1543 – 1544 years. – Captain Gaspar Pacheco, his son Melchor and 30 soldiers, renowned for brutality, incredible even for the Spanish conquistadors, is directed against Chektamal. Resistance drowned in blood, and the whole province ravaged ground. Center of the Spaniards became the town of Salamanca de Bakalar. Maya in communications at the time said “as many men as women were killed with clubs and thrown into the lake tied to their feet the cargo in order to be drowned. Fierce dogs used in war torn parts of unarmed Indians. The Spaniards treated them (Indians) as a pet and they forced them to wear goods, and beat them like vile animals. It is said that they cut off hands and noses of many Indians. ”

1544 – Valladolid moved from the vicinity of Chavak-ha, where the terrain was unhealthy, in Saki.

Yucatan came under the jurisdiction of the Border audience, whose residence is in Grasis-a Dios (Honduras)

1545 – Arrival in Merida of the first Franciscan

1546November 9 – revolt in the provinces of the Cupul and Tas. The rebels killed the landlords and laid siege to Valladolid. One day they killed 17 Spaniards and 400 Indians their servants. The rebels immediately sent across the country hands and feet in a sign that they have committed to provoke revolt. But other provinces have not supported the uprising, and it was suppressed to move out of Merida Spanish troops who were trying to intimidate the Indian mass beatings and brutal executions. (1546-1547)

1547 – 1549 years. – Pacifying Bay Area Dulce.

1548 – Montejo was recalled to Spain and deposed.

1562 – July 12 – The auto-da-fe in the Mani.

August 12 – Arrival in Merida of the Bishop Francisco Toral.


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