lunes, 7 de enero de 2008

¿Who is Tenamaxtli?

The Mixton War*

This war was like no other. It was the uprising of the Caxcanes natives. Led by Tenamaxtli who fought the Spaniards because the Spaniards were using the natives as slaves (Even though they didn't consider them slaves because they were considered "free" even though they weren't being paid and it was against their will.). They destroyed everything that the Spaniards built especially stuff that was religious. Guadalajara was supposed to be in Nochistlan (3rd one named Guadalajara at the time. The one that exist in Jalisco is the fourth one) but Tenamaxtli attacked the Spaniards who were living there. The Spanish forces went back afterwards with more soldiers and finally got the Caxcanes to surrender. They renamed Tenamaxtli to Francisco Tenamaxtli because they couldn't pronounce his name. If this war would have been successful, the natives could've destroyed the existence of the Spaniards living in Mexico and things would've returned to the way things were before the coming of the Spaniards.

On this caxcana land it was so tied to the conquest of the aboriginal towns by the Spaniards, it is an obligation on giving reference to the Mixton War and the protector of the indigenous rebellion, Francisco Tenamaxtli. Then out comes the question of why Francisco, the answer is that when Tenamaxtli distinguish himself as a warrior he was already baptized and pertained to the economy of Miguel of Ibarra, encomendero of Nochistlan.

The Spaniards came to this land on 1530 and they went receiving peace, from the senor of Juchipila, Xiuhticuhtli, Tenamaxtli of Nochistlan, Petlacatl of Jalpa and by the cacique of the Teul. The Indigenous came a couple of years ago supporting the vejaciones which was infligian by the Spaniards. Until they were mistreated and Xiuhticuhtli traveled through the land to bring the tlatol (the word, the discourse) which cause the Indigenous to start a rebellion.

There were various clashes between the Spaniards, Caxcanes and Zacatecos. The Caxcanes and Zacatecos allied to throw out the foreigners of these lands. In Nayarit, the Coras incited jefaturados by Coringa. This happened in the year of 1541. In Jachipila which resulted the Caxcanes being victorious; and the same occurred in Nochistlan, so much that the gobernador of New Galicia requested the intervention of Pedro of Alvarado that returned prize-winning of Guatemala and feared for their cruelty between the Mexica of Tenochtitlan. For this Tenamaxtli attacked Guadalajara.

Pedro de Alvarado did not hear the advice of gobernador of New Galicia for he felt that it was not time to attack Nochistlan because it was the rainy season. Alvarado argued that how was it possible that four cats made too much noise. This referred to the senors of Juchipila, Jalp, Nochistlan, and Tlaltenango, and went on that with the military of the people that he had was sufficient to put them in their place. This would cause Alvarado to encounter death in Nochistlan, he died on the 4th of July in 1541 in Guadalajara. With these clashes resulted the figure of Tenamaxtli like strategy of the war. Until, being attached of the truth, Tenamaxtli was not insatiably warlike, he was actually conciliatory, diplomatic. First he forced in the intent of fixing the things adjust to reason and justice, being supported of the natural right, now that he was obligated to defend his land, his family, and his vassals; but for the Spanish, What did they find on this foreign land, and why did they wanted to despoil them for their ownerships and reduce them al vasallaje to a senor that was across the sea?

It is here that it is clear that whether or not Francisco Tenamaxtli and Diego of Zacateco were the same person. There is a lot of proof that confirms that they were two distinct persons. Francisco Tenamaxtli conciliatory, always maintaining to reason and justice; lover of peace. He declared war when there was no other alternative: "Axcan quema, tehuatl nehuatl". Now, you or me. With this declaration of war they battled against the virrey Antonio de Mendoza who form an army with numerous Indigenous people, with which was more than 50 thousand Tlaxcaltecas, Mexicanos (Mexica), Purepechas, and others total. Tenamaxtli waited in the penol of Nochistlan with his Caxcanes and Zacatecos. Of course before the beginning of the battle the senor of Jalpa, Petlacatl, interviewed with the Spaniards telling them that he was there because he was afraid of Tenamaxtli; but that he did not have anything against them; they blocked the exit so that he would stop the scenario where he would stop the combat. That's how they did it, they blocked the rearguard and Petlacatl moved away to Jalpa with his two thousand warriors, where they left to discovered where they were corresponded to defend.

Hunger, lack of water, the disadvantage in implements of war, and in the number of combatants gave the triumph to Mendoza. Afterwards the Caxcanes of the region of Juchipila and their allies that they weren?t conquered that easily, they empenolaron in the Mixton with their women and children to present the definitive battle. To her the volunteers of Jalpa responded with the permission of their senor.

Of Nochistlan, Mendoza marched to Juchipila where pernocto and organized the strategy of war. Before establishing his camp in the wilderness of Mixton, sent emissaries solicitant to the indigenous decreased to peace because the Spaniards detained Tenamaxtli. The captains of the indigenous empenolados asked to see him, sending at the same time a species of embassy to be interviewed with Miguel of Ibarra. In fact, they saw Tenamaxtli, but in a military maneuver they snatched him off the hands of the Spaniards and Tenamaxtli fled with them caused him to become the captain general of the rebellion. Mendoza went with his plan of war which he layout. Within this was to despair the indigenous for the lack of food and water.

Something happened in Nochistlan. The Teultecas before putting the orders of Tenamaxtli, they apalabraron with the Spaniards agreeing that they would launch their arrows to the air so that they would not cause them harm. The Spaniards for their part offered to respect their lives.

The Teultecas, in the hour of the clash were obligated to abandon their trenches so that the rest of the warriors would do the same to respond in defense.

The battle resulted favorable to the army of virrey Mendoza. Tenamaxtli fled for the mountain range accompanied by his allegados and went in the wilderness of Nayarit. Anduvo alzado nine years, maintaining combats every time it was necessary. If the Caxcana rebellion put a tremble to the conquest, the Mixton was a battle devisiva, which had not finished with it. It continued there being groups of native rebellious called Chichimecas by the Spaniards, which lived in peace even in 1590 by the participation of the racially mestizo Miguel Caldera which he proposed to appease them with other forms different than those of the Spaniards.

Tenamaxtli decided to return to the frailes franciscanos, which they took him to the bishop of Guadalajara Pedro Gomez de Maraver. And this it conducted it at the same time to Mexico City with the second virrey of New Spain don Luis of Velasco, with the hope of which he would be forgiven because the fight was just. Nevertheless, the decision of the virrey of Velasco was not in favor of Tenamaxtli and was deported to Valladolid, Spain in 1552. In Valladolid he continued his fight, but now instead of using arrows he used reason and the ideas in defense of justice and liberty.

Luck occurred in Valladolid when he met with fray Bartolome of the Casas, tireless defender of the Indigenous against the Spaniards in the bishopric of Chiapas. Of the Casas he became his counselor and translator in the summing-ups that Tenamaxtli presented to the Consejo of Indies and the king of Spain, in which among others many things he just asked that they returned him to his land to recover what was his.

He did not achieve anything because there is record of him to 1556. The name of Francisco Tenamaxtli after this year is lost. The only thing that is sure is that he never returned to New Spain, therefore if he did the cronistas would have written something about him.

He transcribed a button of his summing-ups of the relation of wrongs that does. He took it of the book "The Arrow In The White" of Miguel Leon Portilla:

"Don Francisco Tenamaxtli, cacique or tatoan (tlahtoani or gobernante) of the province of Nochiztlan and Jalisco?

I have been sent to this kingdom of Castilla?preso and banished, alone, dispossessed from my state and senorio and from my wife and children, with poverty, thirst, and hunger and extreme need by sea and by land, suffering many offenses and insults and pursuits? The Spaniards have not stop doing what they did to me and so many and not credible by man of the world, irreparable damages, doing me injust wars, cruelty, killing me in them many of my vassals and to my relatives and deudos?

The beginning of this damages and wrongs received was from a don Nuno of Guzman that first came to my land, for I was senor of these lands, not recognizing to another senor in the world by superior?

Because I, he told don Francisco, didn?t want but to leave of peace, sending my people to receive the Spaniards?

And p?sonos to me, he said to don Francisco and to my people, and the many other caciques and senors, with the forces in the usual asp?rrimo captiverio and servants that the Spaniards called encomiendas, distributing each Spaniard the towns and neighboring dellos as if we were beasts of the field...

The injustices and cruelties of Juan of Onate and Cristobal of Onate and of Miguel of Ibarra which made captains committed in that kingdom, it could not be seen nor thought. They hung nine principles because by the vajaciones and scourges and sticks, and other diverse evil and cruelty and no sufribles bad treatments that so much impiety and wickedness, hu?anse to the mounts?

And I, he told don Francisco, seeing that much inhumanity, to the nine caciques together, without justice, hallandolos in their houses and safe land, habian ahoracado, and many and innumerable from my vasallos perish, no quedando dellos from all the neighbors of that kingdom one of a hundred parts, there was no justice nor remedio de haberla? I remember also listening to the people who good cared of me, to save them and me? because if I didn?t hear, with the same injustice and cruelty, fuera ahoracado.

This flee, and this natural defense, very powerful senors, call and have been called always the Spaniards, mistreating of the property of the words, in all the Indies, against the King to be raised".

Tenamaxtle, or correctly Tenamaxtli or Tenamatzin, means according to fray Alonso of Molina: "stones which are put in a girded to be heated by the fire". Miguel Leon Portilla says: "For him to adopt for a name or title of a principal senor, could be done in metaphorical sense, as soon as support or backup of the town, since with the said stones which formed in which the living of the community was prepared".

I finish this rese?a historic of Francisco Tenamaxtli, saying the words of Miguel Leon Portilla that affirms:

"Tenamaztle became strong in the mounts or penoles to escape from being hung like so many others, tired of the infamies that he was against the crimes committed by the encomederos and soldiers. It was his natural defense which, like as with certainty expression says, "they call and have called always the Spaniards? against the King to be raised"

This was the Francisco Tenamaztle, of which much was a great deal was spoken in his time, falling at times in errors and confusions. As we have seen, the ones that knew him personally and he himself do not leave in reality doubts about of his identity: it was him who fought like the senor of Nochistlan; sought from time to time the peace; rejected, continued his fight for nine year until the end opted for being delivered the friars that caused the arrival of bishop G?mez De Maraver. Deported to Spain, he found there, in Valladolid with fray Bartolome. Helped for this, undertook a new form of form of battle in defense of the rights of his pueblo and in search of his liberty.

Gracias a:

Translated and transcribed by Tecpaocelotl (

3 comentarios:

Guzío dijo...

Oh you speak english? Sorry, I understimated you, I thought you were so ignorant to know that.

Anyway, poor Tenamaxtli, he was a great warrior, and now a lazy looser uses his name.

Tenamaxtli dijo...

Why you call Tecpaocelotl is looser?

Wash your eyes men! I don´t write this article!

Anónimo dijo...

I'm not a looser. jajaja

Tenamaxtli, esta hablando de ti.

Anyway, I have a new blog (tengo un nuevo blog):

If doesn't work, then use