By Robert Himmerich y Valencia

While the Spanish conquistadors were stereotyped as rapacious treasure seekers, many firstcomers to the recent global learned that its maximum wealth lay within the local populations whose exertions may be harnessed to construct a brand new Spain. as a result, the early arrivals in Mexico sought encomiendas—"a supply of the Indians of a prescribed indigenous polity, who have been to supply the grantee (the encomendero) tribute within the type of commoditiesand carrier in go back for cover and non secular instruction."

This learn profiles the 506 recognized encomenderos in New Spain (present-day Mexico) in the course of the years 1521-1555, utilizing their existence histories to chart the increase, florescence, and decline of the encomienda method. the 1st half attracts normal conclusions in regards to the real workings of the encomienda approach. the second one half presents concise biographies of the encomenderos themselves.

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Extra info for The Encomenderos of New Spain, 1521-1555

Sample text

Those seeking opportunities were quick to respond to what could be anticipated in America over what was known to accrue from military service in Spanish campaigns in Europe. Encomenderos from both Castiles, excepting the pobladores antiguos, were underrepresented when their numbers are compared to overall emigration percentages.  Most, if not all, pobladores antiguos came to New Spain by invitation and would not have made the move without assurance of bettering an economic status enjoyed in the islands of the Caribbean.

Just as Tenochtitlan had been the political, social, and economic center of preconquest Mexico, the Spaniards quickly gave Mexico City the same role in postconquest New Spain.  The citizenship of the other is not known.  Few encomendero vecinos could leave their birthplace unrecorded for long in Mexico City (although twenty­seven were successful in doing so).  While many of them took part in subsequent campaigns, others did not participate directly in the conquest. 0% *From Table 2.  9 Seven each of the first conquerors and conquerors held grants nearby, as did one poblador antiguo and three pobladores.

Other way stations on this road were Puebla, Tehuacan, and Huajuapan, each sixty to seventy­five miles apart.

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The Encomenderos of New Spain, 1521-1555 by Robert Himmerich y Valencia
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