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Cinco de Mayo is more widely celebrated in USA than Mexico Tony Burton

US postage stamp commemorating Cinco de Mayo

Of the many battles fought on Mexican soil in the nineteenth century, only one — the Battle of Puebla, fought on May 5, 1862 — has given rise to a Mexican national holiday.

Why this one? The main reason is that the Battle of Puebla marks Mexico's only major military success since independence from Spain in 1821.

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Mexico this month - May Tony Burton

Read about Mexico's important historical events that have occurred during the month of May.

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Mexico this month - April Tony Burton

Statue of Revolutionary hero Emiliano Zapata
© Julia Taylor 2007

Read about Mexico's important historical events that have occurred during the month of April.

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Mexico this month - March Tony Burton

Read about Mexico's important historical events that have occurred during the month of March. read more

Mexico this month - February Tony Burton

February 20, 1943 — A brand-new volcano, subsequently called Paricutín, erupts in a farmer’s field in Michoacan. It attracts world-wide attention. In succeeding years of eruption, two villages, Paricutin and San Juan Parangaricutirimícuaro are lost beneath the lava. Read about Mexico's important historical events that have occurred during the month of February.

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Frey Diego Duran: An eye-witness account of ancient Mexico Ronald A. Barnett ©

Moctezuma II flees the conquistadors
By Frey Diego Duran
Diego Durán was born in Seville, Spain, in 1537 but came to Mexico as a boy. At first he lived in Texcoco but later moved to Mexico City. By then, the old Aztec world was in ruins but vestiges of the former Aztec empire remained. Durán was not only fluent in Nahuatl, the Aztec language, but he was acquainted with the Indians, some of whom had survived the Conquest. He was therefore a first-hand witness of the conflict between the Spanish and Indian cultures... read more

Mexico this month - January Tony Burton

Read about Mexico's important historical events that have occurred during the month of January.

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Mesoamerican epic poetry and saga: Universal elements Ronald A. Barnett ©

An Aztec musician poet from the Codex Borbonicus
The Aztecs formed a highly civilized society with poet-kings busily engaged in learned philosophical discussions. Unfortunately, the general public hears mostly about the Aztec practice of tearing out human hearts.

Prior to the Conquest, written documents in Roman transcription did not exist. The Aztecs handed down history and customs through an oral tradition backed up by codices — the "painted books" of ancient Mexico. It is true that the Aztecs did have a form of writing based on a combination of commonly recognized symbols (the Maya had an even more advanced form of phonetic symbolism). Nevertheless, written documents do imply a post-Conquest period of composition. This, in turn, raises the question of Spanish missionary influence on these apparently "native" compositions... read more

Mexico this month - December Tony Burton

Read about Mexico's important historical events that have occurred during the month of December. read more

A Huichol creation story Ronald A. Barnett ©

Tawexikia the sun centers this nierika or Huichol votive yarn painting. The blue deer accopanies the sun.
© Kinich Ramirez, 2006
A Huichol friend of mine, Juan Bautista Carillo, came up with the idea of a trilingual edition (Huichol, Spanish, English) of traditional Huichol narratives,

The original version entitled Historia El Tau-Sol (Huichol and Spanish for "sun", which I translated using both the Huichol and the Spanish versions, came to about 3368 words. Therefore I shall give a condensed version of the main outline followed by an attempt to explain its meaning and significance.

This is not an account of the creation of human beings but of their main means of sustenance, namely fire and the sun. Accordingly this particular Huichol narrative begins with the creation of the first hearth fire... read more
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