discovery

The Egg of Columbus. October 12, 1492.

An egg of Columbus refers to a brilliant idea or discovery that seems simple or easy after the fact. The expression refers to an apocryphal story in which Christopher Columbus, having been told that discovering the Americas was inevitable and no great accomplishment, challenges his critics to make an egg stand on its tip. After his challengers give up, Columbus does it himself by tapping the egg on the table to flatten its tip. The Columbus story may have originated with Italian historian and traveler Girolamo Benzoni. In his book History of the New World, published in 1565, he wrote: Columbus being at a party with many noble Spaniards, where, as was customary, the subject of conversation was the Indies: one of them undertook to say: —”Mr. Christopher, even if you had not found the I...

Hernán Cortés and Moctezuma. November 8, 1519.

Upon entering the city of Tenochtitlan, on November 8, 1519, the meeting between Moctezuma and Hernán Cortés took place, with Doña Marina (La Malinche) as translator. Moctezuma II thought Spaniards had been sent by the god that would come from the East (Quetzalcóatl) and so, he was a magnificent host. He even presented Cortés, among other things, with the Headpiece of God Quetzalcóatl, also known as the Moctezuma Crest, wich was sent among other gifts, to the Imperial Spanish Court of Charles V. Moctezuma lodged the Spanish soldiers in the temple of his ancestor Axayácatl (Moctezuma´s father), and they spent the following days visiting palaces and temples as well as the city of Tlatelolco. Upon the request of Cortés of building a catholic chapel, Moctezuma allowed them to do so, inside the...

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