The Conquest of America... was it right or wrong? 70 replies

Please wait...

Meyerlifts

I'm too cool to Post

50 XP

16th June 2009

0 Uploads

13 Posts

0 Threads

#11 11 years ago
Professor Dr. Scientist;4930928Guns, germs and steel.

Actually, I have to disagree with you on 2½ points.

There were around 300 armed Spaniards. An expert musketeer could fire one shot and reload in about one minute. In that time an average Aztec warrior would be able to cover more that 400 meters. So even if the Spaniard could defeat the Aztec warrior in hand to hand combat, there would be an overwhelming number of Aztecs behind him. As for germs, the Aztecs had already suffered from a great plague prior to the invasion of the Europeans. They already had a slight immunity. Not much, but enough to save a good handful of them. Armor is only so effective. Sure it would defend the Spanish from a lot of the Aztecs weapons (arrows, knives, light blunt weapons). But all armor has gaps and weak spots. And how heavily armored could you be in the heat of central America before becoming exhausted?




crisissuit3

We will rule you

101,365 XP

17th August 2007

0 Uploads

9,209 Posts

0 Threads

#12 11 years ago

they also had horses, dont forget the horses which if i remember correctly wasnt seen in that area before which striked fear into the aztecs, or something like that.




NiteStryker

Biggest F-ing A-hole 2010

215,560 XP

24th April 2003

0 Uploads

18,771 Posts

0 Threads

#13 11 years ago

Simple expansion. I kick your ass, I get your land. I approve of this even to today.




SeinfeldisKindaOk

5.56 smoke Haji every day

55 XP

17th July 2008

0 Uploads

8,397 Posts

0 Threads

#14 11 years ago
Meyerlifts;4931039Actually, I have to disagree with you on 2½ points. There were around 300 armed Spaniards. An expert musketeer could fire one shot and reload in about one minute. In that time an average Aztec warrior would be able to cover more that 400 meters. So even if the Spaniard could defeat the Aztec warrior in hand to hand combat, there would be an overwhelming number of Aztecs behind him.

Man, you have a lot of data on the physical capabilities of the Aztecs. How did you get it? Did time travelling Aztecs participate in the NFL combine or are you just making stuff up?

As for germs, the Aztecs had already suffered from a great plague prior to the invasion of the Europeans. They already had a slight immunity. Not much, but enough to save a good handful of them.

So we're down from tens of thousands of Aztec warriors to a handful, that seems like germs made a significant impact. Just because they got sick in the past doesn't mean another disease didn't affect them.

Armor is only so effective. Sure it would defend the Spanish from a lot of the Aztecs weapons (arrows, knives, light blunt weapons). But all armor has gaps and weak spots.

Yeah armor has weak spots, so does the human body. Armor's strong spots protect many of the body's weaker spots.

And how heavily armored could you be in the heat of central America before becoming exhausted?

I don't know, the Spanish won before they got tired.




The_Geek_With_The_Gun

Keep whining Im reloading

50 XP

25th May 2007

0 Uploads

3,321 Posts

0 Threads

#15 11 years ago
NiteStryker;4931101Simple expansion. I kick your ass, I get your land. I approve of this even to today.

I find myself agreeing here. If the conquest had not occurred. The world would be very different.




Guest

I didn't make it!

0 XP

 
#16 11 years ago
Professor Dr. Scientist;4931130[/SIZE]I don't know, the Spanish won before they got tired.

The Spanish wouldn't have had much more on that an iron breastplate, I believe. Remember that at that point in time armor was being made obsolete by firearms. These were not knights invading the new world.

That said, the Spanish still had guns, horses, and immunity on their side.




NiteStryker

Biggest F-ing A-hole 2010

215,560 XP

24th April 2003

0 Uploads

18,771 Posts

0 Threads

#17 11 years ago
The_Geek_With_The_Gun;4931155I find myself agreeing here. If the conquest had not occurred. The world would be very different.

If we were to get our asses kicked, then whoever did it gets our land.




Locomotor

in spite of erosion

50 XP

13th May 2004

0 Uploads

3,490 Posts

0 Threads

#18 11 years ago
I personally believe that the initial motives of the Spanish were noble.

That's a laugh. The Spanish conquerors did not go to observe and report, they went to do what they did best, conquer. No imperialist adventure in history has been for altruistic reasons, even if the state involved professed as much. Colonial powers (and their neo-colonial counterparts today), especially the most powerful one in the world at the time, sought to open new markets and steal the wealth of the indigenous (not that I am apologizing for the Aztecs, they were a brutal, ignorant civilization).




Nemmerle Advanced Member

Voice of joy and sunshine

299,174 XP

26th May 2003

0 Uploads

28,206 Posts

6 Threads

#19 11 years ago

Right or wrong depend on what you intend to get out of something.

Meyerlifts;4931039Armor is only so effective. Sure it would defend the Spanish from a lot of the Aztecs weapons (arrows, knives, light blunt weapons). But all armor has gaps and weak spots. And how heavily armored could you be in the heat of central America before becoming exhausted?

The virtue of armour against an edged weapon is even an extremely light armour covering the torso and a couple of bracers make you almost invulnerable provided you keep moving. It's not that there aren't weak points, it's just that getting around someone's guard generally involves a hit to the torso or forearms. Once you armour those areas, and given the Spanish had relatively light blades with a keen edge, you can kill a great number of lesser armed oponents in a very short space of time without becoming especially tired.




Mr. Pedantic

I would die without GF

234,620 XP

8th October 2006

0 Uploads

23,127 Posts

0 Threads

#20 11 years ago

Wrong for exactly who? Obviously, the Spanish were pretty keen for it, and not just for the gold, either. I doubt the Aztecs themselves would be too chuffed about it, though.

Thousands of prisoners were slaughtered for religious ceremonies at a time. Aztec priests specialized in killing their victim by cracking his or her sternum, cutting open their chest, and removing their heart in mere seconds. Along with that, the priests would skin women while they were alive and then wear their skin. The Aztecs showed excessive brutality in war (raping, flogging, etc). I could go on for paragraphs of the Aztecs evil ways.

They were doing it because they believed the sun wouldn't go up if they didn't. I don't know if you could call that evil. Horrendously misguided, yes, but evil? That's a bit of a stretch. Anyway, it's not as if the Conquistadors were saints who didn't inflict any suffering on the Aztecs, what with their diseases and all.

So what did the conquistadors do when they saw what was going on?

I'm not convinced they were acting purely to stop said atrocities. Gold must surely have played a big part, and Cortez was a greedy bugger.

But how could a few hundred Spanish defeat any empire of millions

What did the Aztecs call Cortez? Quexlcoatl or something? That sort of helped. At least in the beginning. As you said, the Spanish were aided by 'rebels'. They weren't really, their most powerful allies were whole civilizations.

The Spanish wouldn't have had much more on that an iron breastplate, I believe. Remember that at that point in time armor was being made obsolete by firearms. These were not knights invading the new world.

That said, the Spanish still had guns, horses, and immunity on their side.

Let's be realistic. That metal armour (plus helmet, and possibly greaves as well) was a great help against Aztec weapons, whose cutting edges were made with obsidian. Essentially sharp glass. Glass isn't so good against cutting iron alloys, they're not hard enough. So really, for the Aztecs in battle, it was either aim for the uncovered bits, or pretend your sword was a club.