The Aztecs suffered from the effects of smallpox in more ways than one. To begin, it directly caused the death of a significant number of its victims, mainly newborns and young children.
For instance, it is said that a widespread outbreak of smallpox occurred among the Aztecs residing in Tenochtitlan between the months of September and November in the year 1520. Cuitláhuac, the Aztecs’ most recent tlatoani, succumbed to the sickness and died as a result of it. Historians are unaware of the total number of Aztecs who suffered and perished from the disease during this period.
According to the findings of several specialists, the Aztec civilization was eradicated by a horrific sickness that caused its victims to bleed from the eyes, mouth, and nose. When a disease known as cocoliztli spread over the Aztec country in Mexico in the year 1545, it killed an estimated 80 percent of the population, which the scientific community estimates to be up to 15 million people.
According to new research, the Aztec civilization was eradicated by a horrifying sickness known as ″eye-bleeding,″ which killed 15 million people in only five years. When a disease known as cocoliztli spread over the Aztec country in Mexico in the year 1545, it killed an estimated 80 percent of the population, which the scientific community estimates to be up to 15 million people.
Cuitláhuac, the Aztecs’ most recent tlatoani, succumbed to the sickness and died as a result of it.Historians are unaware of the total number of Aztecs who suffered and perished from the disease during this period.As a result of the deaths of Moctezuma II and Cuitláhuac, the Aztecs were unable to maintain a stable leadership structure throughout the Spanish invasion of Tenochtitlan.This is a crucial fact to keep in mind.
It is possible that the collapse of the once-powerful Aztec Empire in the early 16th century was not caused by the invasion of European colonialists, as is commonly believed, who brought with them diseases such as mumps, measles, and smallpox for which the native populations lacked immunity. Instead, an intriguing theory suggests that this type of weather pattern may have been the culprit.
Within five years, an epidemic that the natives referred to as ″cocoliztli″ was responsible for the deaths of as many as 15 million people, which is equivalent to an estimated 80 percent of the population. In the Nahuatl language of the Aztecs, the term translates to ″plague.″ However, the reason behind it has been debated for about half a millennium now.
Cocoliztli is the Nahualtl word for ″plague,″ which is what the Aztec people named it. It caused an epidemic-level level of destruction in the highlands of Mexico, which led to the utter annihilation of certain indigenous peoples’ population.
Before the advent of Europeans, the illness known as smallpox was not only unheard of in Mexico, but it was also unheard of across the rest of the Americas. It was brought to the territories that are now part of Mexico by the Spanish, and it was a crucial factor in the collapse of the Aztec Empire.
More than three million Aztecs perished as a result of the smallpox epidemic; with such a severely depleted population, it was very simple for the Spanish to conquer Tenochtitlán.
Aztecs did not had any protection to the illnesses brought by Europeans. The indigenous people were ravaged by a smallpox epidemic that greatly reduced their capacity for resistance against the Spanish. The epidemic decimated the Aztec people, causing a significant drop in their population and causing an estimated fifty percent of the people living in Tenochtitlan to perish.
Only a little amount of meat was consumed on a daily basis; the Aztec diet was predominantly vegetarian, with the exception of grasshoppers, maguey worms, ants, and other types of larvae.
In the past, the successful conquest of the Mexican Aztec and Peruvian Inca empires by a handful of Spanish conquistadors led by Hernando Cortes and Francisco Pizarro, respectively, resulted in large part from epidemics of smallpox and measles virus infection that decimated the native defenders. These epidemics occurred during the 15th and 16th centuries.
By the 1500s, they had not only survived, but even triumphed over their adversaries, and they were making every effort to ensure that they would not be forced to regress. They conquered their neighbors, at first the various ethnic groups that lived in the central core of Mexico, and subsequently far further away, by employing both their intelligence and their physical might.
In 1521, a group of foreign invaders headed by the Spanish conqueror Hernán Cortés successfully destroyed the Aztec Empire and took control of Tenochtitlan, bringing an end to Mesoamerica’s last great indigenous civilisation.
What caused the Aztecs to go extinct? Researchers Have Discovered Some New Leads. Salmonella might have been a contributing factor in an epidemic that occurred in the 16th century and claimed the lives of millions of people. Aztecs living in what is now the southern region of Mexico were affected by a devastating epidemic from 1545 to 1550.
The indigenous inhabitants of Mexico were subjected to an epidemic sickness in the wake of the European conquest (Figure 1), starting with the smallpox pandemic that lasted from 1519 to 1520 and claimed the lives of anywhere between 5 million and 8 million individuals.
They took the Aztecs down one block at a time, murdering without discrimination and pillaging all they could get their hands on. Temples were leveled along with residential buildings. Cortés claimed ownership of Tenochtitlan on August 13, 1521, shortly after the city was destroyed by his forces.
The 5,000 Incans were massacred by Pizarro’s troops in less than an hour.Pizarro himself was the only Spanish person to experience an injury; he got a cut on his hand as he was trying to save Atahualpa from certain death.Pizarro held Atahualpa in custody after realizing that the Inca Emperor was originally more useful to him alive than dead.This allowed Pizarro to make preparations to take over the Inca Empire.