Estados Unidos Mexicanos (United States of Mexico)
  • Barry Turner
Part of the The Statesman’s Yearbook book series (SYBK)


From about 2000 BC the people of Ancient Mexico began to settle in villages and to cultivate maize and other crops. From about 1000 BC the main cultures included the Olmec on the Gulf Coast, the Maya in the Yucatan peninsula and modern day Chiapas, the Zapotecs and Mixtecs in Oaxaca, the Tarascans in Michoacân and the Toltecs in central Mexico. One of the largest and most powerful cities in ancient Mexico was Teotihuacân, which in the 6th century AD was one of the six most populous cities in the world. By the time the Spanish conquistadores arrived in 1519, the dominant people were the Mexica, more commonly known as the Aztecs, whose capital Tenochtitlân became Mexico City after the conquest. Hernân Cortés landed on the Gulf Coast in 1519 and by 1521 had destroyed the Aztec state. The land conquered by Cortés was named New Spain, and was ruled by the Spanish Crown for three centuries. Rich silver mines were discovered and large estates (haciendas) were formed. Social dislocation and European diseases caused a collapse of the indigenous population. In 1520 the native population was probably 20m. By 1540 it had fallen to 6–5m. and by 1650 the figure was just over lm.


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Further Reading

  1. Instituto Nacional de Estadística, Geografía e Informática. Anuario Estadistíco de los Estados Unidos Mexicanos. Mexican Bulletin of Statistical Information. Quarterly.Google Scholar
  2. Aspe, P., Economic Transformation: the Mexican Way. Cambridge (MA), 1993Google Scholar
  3. Bartra, R., Agrarian Structure and Political Power in Mexico. Johns Hopkins Univ. Press, 1993Google Scholar
  4. Bethell, L. (ed.) Mexico since Independence. CUP, 1992Google Scholar
  5. Camp, R. A., Politics in Mexico. 2nd ed. OUP, 1996Google Scholar
  6. Hamnett, Brian R., A Concise History of Mexico. CUP, 1999CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Krauze, E., Mexico, Biography of Power: A History of Modern Mexico, 1810–1996. London. 1997Google Scholar
  8. Philip, G. (ed.) The Presidency in Mexican Politics. London, 1991.—Mexico. [Bibliography] 2nd ed. ABC-Clio, Oxford and Santa Barbara (CA), 1993Google Scholar
  9. Rodriguez, J. E., The Evolution of the Mexican Political System. New York, 1993Google Scholar
  10. Ruiz, R. E., Triumphs and Tragedy: a History of the Mexican People. New York, 1992Google Scholar
  11. Turner, Barry (ed.) Latin America Profiled. Macmillan, London, 2000Google Scholar
  12. Whiting, V. R., The Political Economy of Foreign Investment in Mexico: Nationalism , Liberalism, Constraints on Choice. Johns Hopkins Univ. Press, 1992Google Scholar
  13. National statistical office: Instituto Nacional de Estadistica, Geografïa e Informâtica (INEGI), Aguascalientes.Google Scholar
  14. Website (Spanish only):

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barry Turner

There are no affiliations available

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