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  2. King's Conquest (Mending the Rift #1) by Valentina Heart
  3. Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary
  4. 3. Zechariah Part 1 - The Night Visions (1:1—6:15)
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Rumours of a powerful kingdom in the interior had been confirmed by emissaries from the city of Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztecs. There is no real evidence that they were regarded as ominous premonitions before the conquest. Through a combination of brutal force and diplomacy, he gradually convinced many groups to support him and openly defy the Aztecs. During their first few days in the city, the conquistadors were shown both the wonders and horrors of this new world. They marvelled at the towering temples, grand palaces, beautiful gardens and great markets, but were revolted by the terrible spectacle of human sacrifice.

Surrounded by thousands of warriors in the Aztec capital, the conquistadors became increasingly aware of their precarious position and began to fear a trap. He seized Montezuma, and for the next eight months ruled the city through him. Why and to what extent Montezuma cooperated remains unclear, but his cooperation certainly secured the temporary obedience of the people, albeit in an atmosphere of increasing resentment.

Retreating to Tlaxcala, he marshalled his remaining forces and allies, not without difficulty, and determined to reverse their fortunes. Constructed in Tlaxcala, the boats were carried in pieces to the lake by thousands of indigenous bearers in an incredible feat of dedication and skill. After Christmas , the conquistadors set out to return to Tenochtitlan. They had to face attacks in outlying regions, but the brigantines were finally launched late in April and, with forces besieging the city from every direction, the battle began in earnest. The siege was devastating for both sides.

King's Conquest (Mending the Rift #1) by Valentina Heart

The skill and sheer number of the Aztec warriors caused massive casualties among the attackers, even while they themselves died in huge numbers from starvation and disease. During the turbulent days before the Night of Tears, Montezuma was killed — a crime of which each side accused the other. The weapons and armour of the Spaniards were certainly formidable against the easily-shattered obsidian blades and arrows of the indigenous people, but the thousands of allies supporting the conquistadors should not be forgotten.

On 13 August , Cuauhtemoc was captured and the Aztecs admitted defeat. There is one final piece, or rather person, to this puzzle. She has been seen alternately as the mother of the mestizo people of mixed blood nation or the ultimate traitor to her people, and this ambiguity underlies modern Mexican attitudes to their history. In recent years, the Aztec past has been increasingly rediscovered and valued as a vital part of Mexican heritage, but Spanish, particularly Catholic, culture also underlies their way of life.

Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Colonialism cannot be justified by the doubtful measure of progress but, for better or worse, conquistadors helped to create the global world in which we live. Transatlantic links drove forward the exchange of goods, information and people, beginning the process of conquest and colonisation which created our modern multicultural world.

Caroline Dodds is a lecturer at the University of Leicester specialising in Aztec and early modern Atlantic history. In , he sailed to the Indies where he helped in the conquest of Cuba and married a relative of its first governor. In , he sailed to Spain, where he was received and rewarded. After returning to Spain in to plead his cause, he died disillusioned in Seville in Despite his bitterness, he was a rich man, and left both wealth and status to his many children.

Between about and the s, the Aztecs flourished on the site of modern-day Mexico City. They rose from humble beginnings as migrants from the north through a combination of military and diplomatic tactics to become the dominant force in the region. Originally founded on inhospitable marsh and small islands in Lake Texcoco, by the 16th century their great island capital of Tenochtitlan had grown into a spectacular metropolis, linked to the mainland by three tremendous causeways and the heart of a network of nearly subject and allied cities.

The city was clean and well-ordered, with strong laws and political administration, but the Aztecs have often been regarded as a brutal and even evil people because they practised human sacrifice. The Aztec gods required human blood let from living bodies, as well as through the death of sacrificial victims to nourish them and sustain the world.

It was believed that sacrifice led to a privileged afterlife and some Aztecs themselves became victims, but captives were most commonly used for this purpose. The Aztecs were not dehumanised by this bloodshed, however. They were an expressive and sophisticated civilisation that valued poetry, art and family highly.

In the Reyne Rebellion , young Tywin eradicated House Reyne down to the last child, restoring Lannister dominance over the Westerlands after a generation of weak rule under his father Tytos.

3. Zechariah Part 1 - The Night Visions (1:1—6:15)

Young Cersei Lannister expected to be betrothed to Prince Rhaegar Targaryen , but received a troubling prophecy from a woods-witch. Aerys becomes paranoid over talk in the castle that Tywin is the true ruler of the Seven Kingdoms. When Lord Darklyn of Duskendale refuses to pay his taxes, Aerys resolves to crush the problem himself without Tywin's aid. Unfortunately, the situation gets out of control and Aerys is imprisoned for several months in Duskendale before Tywin and Barristan Selmy assault the castle and rescue him.


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The Darklyns are burned alive for their treachery. Later historians claim that the Defiance of Duskendale marked the beginning of the end for Aerys's sanity. Aerys refuses to allow blades in his presence anymore except those of his Kingsguard , developing a deranged appearance with uncut and filthy hair hanging to his waist, and uncut fingernails growing several inches long.

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His behavior becomes even more unstable, such as having Ser Ilyn Payne 's tongue ripped out with hot pincers when he was overheard whispering accurately that Tywin was the real man holding the realm together at this point. Aerys laughs hysterically as he has Rickard and Brandon Stark executed in the throne room.

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Robert Baratheon and his rebel army fight their way out of the Stormlands at the Battle of Summerhall. The Tyrells lay siege to Storm's End for nearly a year; the remaining garrison commanded by Stannis Baratheon nearly starves to death, but pin down the Tyrell army.

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Robert and Rhaegar engage in an epic duel at the climatic Battle of the Trident , ending in Rhaegar's death and the defeat of the main Targaryen army. Queen Rhaella died giving birth to Daenerys on Dragonstone, who was then spirited away with her brother Viserys into exile in the Free Cities. Catelyn is shocked when Eddard returns back from the south at the end of the war - bringing a baby he says is his bastard son that he fathered on campaign: Jon Snow. All three of Queen Cersei Lannister 's children are secretly bastards born of incest with her own twin brother Jaime.

His son Theon is sent to live with Stark as a political hostage. Jon Arryn ably served as Hand of the King for 17 years, ensuring stable rule and prosperity while Robert drank, ate, and whored. On the verge of her secret being discovered, Cersei has her husband Robert mortally injured in a hunting "accident", and installs Joffrey as king.

Daenerys Targaryen is married to Khal Drogo as a political alliance, giving the Targaryens their first chance since fleeing into exile of gaining an army to retake the Iron Throne with. Using "fire and blood" magic, Daenerys uses Drogo's funeral pyre to hatch three live dragons , bringing the species back from extinction after a century and a half. Robb Stark , declared King in the North by his bannermen, invades the Westerlands. Robert's youngest brother Renly Baratheon declares himself king ahead of middle brother Stannis , and marries Margaery Tyrell to gain the support of her powerful family.

Renly is assassinated by a magical Shadow -creature sent by Stannis and Melisandre. House Greyjoy declares its independence once again, and opportunistically attacks the North while its army is away south. Most of Stannis's fleet assaulting King's Landing is destroyed in a huge wildfire explosion at the massive Battle of the Blackwater.

After Renly's death, House Tyrell shifts its massive support to the Lannisters, in exchange for a royal betrothal. Robb Stark realizes that due to his various political blunders, he has functionally lost the war already. The Stark army is massacred at the Red Wedding.


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Catelyn and Robb are killed in the main hall by the Freys , breaking sacred Guest right. King Robb is stabbed through the heart by Roose Bolton , then the Freys horrifically mutilate his corpse. Like his father Roose, Ramsay Snow betrayed the Starks by taking Winterfell under a flag of truce, then burning the castle. Daenerys Targaryen steals and frees an army of 8, Unsullied with her dragons, then sacks Astapor.

With her new Unsullied army and her young dragons, Daenerys begins a campaign of liberation in Slaver's Bay. King Joffrey marries Margaery Tyrell to secure the Lannister-Tyrell alliance, and celebrate the Lannister victory ending the war. Joffrey ends up assassinated, poisoned at his own wedding feast - and the war enters into a new, more chaotic phase.


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Littlefinger , the secret architect of the entire war, tricking the Starks and Lannisters into fighting each other to exhaust them both. Despite their victory, the Lannisters are bankrupted by the war, leading to a crippling debt crisis with the Iron Bank of Braavos. Oberyn Martell fights Gregor Clegane in a trial by combat , which leaves Oberyn dead and Gregor fatally poisoned. Tywin Lannister is shot dead with a crossbow while on the privy by his own son, Tyrion, who then flees Westeros. Daenerys Targaryen captures Meereen , but facing continued resistance from the local slave-masters, decides to stay and rule as the city's queen until she can stabilize it.