On the Social Organization and Mode of Government of the Ancient Mexicans

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Printed at the Salem Press, 1879 - 143 páginas
 

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Página 597 - caste" and hereditary rank could not exist, that there could not be any division, among the ancient Mexicans, into higher and lower classes, into "nobles" and "common people," or into hereditary professions or vocations like " priests," " warriors," " merchants," "artisans,
Página 597 - Either it consists in landed property with hereditability of title and (at least originally) office, or in a hereditary charge alone, or privilege or power over others transmitted with the blood. While the former has become more usually known and is therefore regarded as characteristic, the latter, always accompanied by " loose wealth " at least, is still found among pastoral nations.62 It may even have been the incipient form of the other. Now, among the ancient Mexicans, we have seen that : —...
Página 697 - ... that based upon kin, and of this, the tribe, characterized by independent territory, a dialect of its own and a common name and worship, formed the highest governmental expression. We have thus, involuntarily almost, retraced our steps to the point of departure and justified, as we believe, our original propositions. We have tried to show that there was, in aboriginal Mexico, neither state, nor nation, nor political society of any kind. We have found a population separated into tribes representing...
Página 598 - Mexicans had no hereditary caste of " medicine men" or priests. We have elsewhere shown that there was no caste of warriors.66 The mode of Tenure and distribution of the soil precludes all possibility of the existence of a permanent class of " tillers." It yet remains to cast a glance at the so-called artisans, and at the traders or
Página 642 - Since the tribe was formed of kins associating together volun-tarily, it must be admitted that they stood on an equal footing, and had, all, an equal share in the tribal government. It was scarcely possible, however, from what we know of the population of aboriginal Mexico, that all the...
Página 603 - merchants" of ancient Mexico became equivalent to distinguished braves, and their deeds entitled them frequently to the rank of chiefs. But if, on one hand, they had no opportunity to secure anything like personal wealth, on the other the rewards of merit did not attach to their offspring. No class of traders, no caste of merchants, can therefore have existed, and if a certain well-earned consideration attached itself to the person of those who embraced occasionally such a hazardous...
Página 653 - Tiene esta ciudad muchas plazas, donde hay continuos mercados y trato de comprar y vender. Tiene otra plaza tan grande como dos veces la ciudad de Salamanca, toda cercada de portales alrededor donde hay cotidianamente arriba de sesenta mil ánimas, comprando y vendiendo...
Página 581 - ... should divide themselves in four principal quarters, with the house which you have built for my resting place in the middle, and that each kin might build within its quarter as best it liked." These quarters are those remaining in Mexico to this day, to wit : the ward of San Pablo, that of San Juan, of Santa Maria la Redonda as it is called, and the ward of San Sebastian. After the Mexicans had divided into these four places their god sent word to them that they should distribute among themselves...
Página 578 - ... assumption, frequently made, that the Mexicans were divided into two distinct clusters at the outset. A council of chiefs, representing the seven kins meeting on equal terms, composed the government of the ancient Mexicans at that period of their history. Among these, occasional "old men" of particular ability loom up as leading advisers.
Página 578 - But, while the organization was thus amply sufficient for the needs of a straggling band, Indian worship or "medicine" (as the native term implies) represented, inside of that organization, the lingering remains of what we have already suggested to be the oldest aboriginal clusters of society. Corresponding to the four original kins of the...

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