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Ancient America
Aztec 101



Aztec 101
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 8
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   6.85

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    calmecac, chinampa, chinampas, macehualli, macehualtin, pilli, sacked, telpochcalli, tlacotin, execute, high-ranking, society, founded, present-day, infamous, non-stop
     content words:    Central America, Lake Texcoco, Mexico City, Aztec Empire, Moctezuma II, Herman CortÚs, Gulf Coast


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Aztec 101
By Vickie Chao
  

1     Legend has it that a long time ago there was a group of people from Aztlán wandering around Central America. Those people had no homes. They traveled from one place to another, hoping to find a good place to settle down. They had no idea where they should turn next. They only knew that their most divine god had promised them land and had given them a clue to find it. One day, they arrived at the shore of Lake Texcoco. They saw an eagle devouring a snake while perching atop a cactus. (This image is now the coat of arms of Mexico, featured at the center of its national flag.) Upon seeing that, they recognized that this was the clue they had been searching for. Right then and there, they put down their things and stopped their wandering. They laid a foundation and began building a city. They called their new home Tenochtitlan (the present-day Mexico City). From there, they went on to establish a formidable empire and created a wonderful culture. Their empire lasted for nearly 300 years. And their culture left a deep imprint in the region which is still clear today.
 
2     Do you know who those people were?
 
3     They were the Aztecs or Mexicas.

Paragraphs 4 to 8:
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