The Triple Alliance Period

Garden of the Triple Alliance
Garden of the Triple Alliance, on Calle Tacuba. Photo: Thelma Datter on Wikimedia Commons

Tezozomoc dies and bequeaths the Tepanec kingdom, today’s Tacubaya, to his sons Tayatzin and Maxtla.  Maxtla is believed to have later poisoned Tayatzin.

Itzcoatl—the “Obsidian Serpent” who lived from 1380 until 1440—reigns as tlatoani of Tenochtitlan.

Maxtla, though, is soon overthrown by the Aztec Triple Alliance, representing the Mexica of Tenochtitlan, the Acolhua people of Texcoco, the remaining Tepanec people of Tlacopan. Tlacopan was the dominant Tepanec city, but a much weaker partner within the alliance than were Tenochtitlan and Texcoco.

Nezahualcoyōtl, (born April 28, 1402) only the most notable of the Triple-Alliance leaders, reigns over Texcoco, in a period remembered for his poetry and his aversion to blood sacrifice.

The town of Zapotitlán is founded on the southern slopes of the Xaltepec volcano in what is today Iztapalapa. The Tlatelolco people, as a reward for assisting in the conquest over the Tepanec people, receive increased fishing rights. These included mainland territories that would later become San Juan de Aragón. The award also included the island of Peñón de los baños.

Ahuitzotl’s celebrated reign as tlatoani  leads to one of the greatest expansions of Mexica power. He is succeeded upon his death by Moctezuma II in 1502.

What was likely the last New Fire Ceremony in history is celebrated on November 6 at Cerra de la Estrella in today’s Iztapalapa.


Arrival of the Spaniards. The Mexica leader, Moctezuma Xocoyotzin, meets with Hernán Cortés on November 8. The meeting is said to have taken place near the present day Hospital de Jesus.

On August 13, México-Tenochtitlan falls to the invading Spanish army.

The Ancient PeriodNew Spain: The Colonial Period