The more unpronounceable of the Aztec names are shortened in many
instances out of consideration for the patience of the reader; thus
'Popocatapetl' becomes 'Popo,' 'Huitzelcoatl' becomes 'Huitzel,'
&c. The prayer in Chapter xxvi. is freely rendered from
Jourdanet's French translation of Fray Bernardino de Sahagun's
History of New Spain, written shortly after the conquest of Mexico
(Book VI, chap. v.), to which monumental work and to Prescott's
admirable history the author of this romance is much indebted. The
portents described as heralding the fall of the Aztec Empire, and
many of the incidents and events written of in this story, such as
the annual personation of the god Tezcatlipoca by a captive
distinguished for his personal beauty, and destined to sacrifice,
are in the main historical. The noble speech of the Emperor
Guatemoc to the Prince of Tacuba uttered while they both were
suffering beneath the hands of the Spaniards is also authentic.