Religious rites were an essential part of the life of the indigenous people who populated the territories that were located in the middle part of the American continent in the 15th century . Many of the customs that were included in the worship of gods were the sacrifice of people, in this way the gods would satisfy their hunger and give the blessing to the peoples. What was the cause of the flower wars?
It is at this point in history that we find the battles of the flowers or the Flower Wars , known as conflicts between the different ethnic groups that existed at the time that allowed us to find those to sacrifice to appease the wrath of the gods.
They received the denomination of floridas because from the point of view of the Aztecs, lives were sacrificed like flowers, which they went to look for in the place where they were carried out. They were considered as a hunt that their gods approved of and therefore dying in these encounters was considered more than a duty, an honor.
Who participated in the Florid Wars?
The protagonists of these conflicts were the inhabitants of the territories located in Mesoamerica, which included the populating cultures of the regions that are currently Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and Mexico . These peoples were joined by definitive traits such as food and economic activities based on the collection of fruits from the ground such as chili, pumpkin, vanilla, avocado, tomato, beans, corn and cocoa. In addition, they had not developed the processes for the smelting of metals such as iron and bronze . Finally, in their ceremonial habits was the custom of the sacrifice of living people as a means of maintaining peaceful relations with the powerful existing gods. What was the cause of the flower wars?
However, among those who participated in these bloody conflicts, those who populated what is now known as Mexico, the Aztecs, stand out . The main groups of this civilization involved in these wars were Huejotzingo, Tlaxcala, Texcoco and Tenochtitlan.
When did the Flower Wars take place?
The Florid Wars began in the pre-Columbian period , approximately in the year 1438, when Moctezuma led the Aztec civilization . Although sacrifices to the gods were a common custom of the religion of the empire, the change in circumstances they faced led them to reach an agreement to find a solution.
Causes of the Flower Wars
The reasons why these conflicts took place are mainly due to religious aspects . During the period preceding the conquest of the Spanish, there was a great shortage of food in the territory dominated by the Aztecs due to the lack of rains , which led the leaders of the empire to conclude that they had lost the favor of the main deities, who instead of blessing them, were punishing them to starve. Because of this, a pact was made that would allow them to find living sacrifices for the sun god and war.
Religious priests, believed to be in direct communication with the gods, served as spokesmen. When the deities were hungry or displeased, these tournaments were held to return to balance in the empire , since the fear that the Aztecs felt towards their superiors was one of their main characteristics. What was the cause of the flower wars?
Characteristics of the Flower Wars
One of the determining factors of these events was their organization. Since the fight was carried out due to the fear that the Aztecs felt for their gods, the place and date of the fight was agreed , that is, the combats were not products of rivalries or ambitions for the territory . The objective that was pursued was to find human offerings for the Aztec god Huitzilopochtli mainly , who was considered as the deity of war and was the maximum figure of the Aztec rites.
Additionally, in the Floridas Wars it was even agreed for both sides to fight with the same number of participants , thus ensuring that the event was fair. The lighting of aromatic incense was the starting order for the confrontation in which it was not incited to kill the enemy, but rather to mutilate it to take it captive. Conclusion was made when it was clear that a considerable number of people had been arrested.
Once those that would be offered to the god of war had been totalized, they went to the temple to conclude the ritual. It is noteworthy that the POWs themselves took this step, no one forced them . This was because the beliefs of the Aztec religion dictated that those who surrendered themselves at the disposal of the god Huitzilopochtli in this way would not face the misfortune of living in hell after death, but would have a just reward next to it. deity. What was the cause of the flower wars?
All the people of the community attended these confrontations. From the leaders to the commoners . On the other hand, because it was an event of religious origin, everyone made an effort to be dressed elegantly and with their best clothes, as they were sacred occasions.
With the institution of these wars as the habit to find offerings for the gods, the Aztec civilization focused on pleasing their gods for fear of displeasing them and receiving their wrath. As a result, the number of warriors dropped greatly, which made the civilization weaker . On the other hand, the concept that the peoples that surrounded the Aztecs formed of their customs affected them in a negative way, as they began to be the object of ridicule and disdain .
On the other hand, the constant bloodshed and loss of valuable children and men resulted in the vertiginous decline of the male population . These conditions eventually ceased to be a cause of joy for the Aztecs, who came to hate the ritual . In fact, when the Spanish arrived at the time of colonization , the feeling of hatred for the Floridas Wars was evident, which led the inhabitants of Tlaxcala to join the conquerors to bring the Aztecs to an end . What was the cause of the flower wars?