Tlaxcala (Nahua state)
Ancient Tlaxcala was a republic ruled by a council of between 50 and 200 chief political officials (teuctli [sg.], teteuctin [pl.]) (Fargher et al. 2010). These officials gained their positions through service to the state, usually in warfare, and as a result came from both the noble (pilli) and commoner (macehualli) classes. Following the Spanish Conquest, Tlaxcala was divided into four fiefdoms (señoríos) by the Spanish corregidor Gómez de Santillán in 1545 (26 years after the Conquest). These fiefdoms were Ocotelolco, Quiahuiztlan, Tepeticpac, and Tizatlan. At this time, four great houses or lineages emerged and claimed hereditary rights to each fiefdom and created fictitious genealogies extending back into the pre-Hispanic to justify their claims (Gibson 1952).
Tlaxcala was never conquered by the Aztec empire, but was engaged in a state of perpetual war, or so-called flower wars. During the Spanish conquest of Mexico, Tlaxcala allied with the Spaniards against the Aztecs, supplying a large contingent for – and at times the majority of – the Spanish-led army that eventually destroyed the Aztec empire.
As a result of their alliance with the Spaniards, Tlaxcala had a somewhat privileged status within Spanish colonial Mexico.
Conquistador Bernal Díaz del Castillo describes the first battle between the Spanish force and the Tlaxcalteca as surprisingly difficult. He writes that they probably would not have survived, had not Xicotencatl the Elder- ruler of Tizatlan- persuaded his son Xicotencatl the Younger- the Tlaxcallan warleader- that it would be better to ally with the newcomers than to kill them. Xicohtencatl the Younger was later condemned by the Tlaxcaltecan ruling council and hanged by Cortés for desertion in April 1521 during the siege of Tenochtitlan.
Due to protracted warfare between the Aztecs and the Tlaxcala, the Tlaxcala were eager to exact revenge, and soon became loyal allies of the Spanish. Even after the Spanish were chased out of Tenochtitlan, the Tlaxcala continued to support their conquest. Tlaxcala also assisted the Spanish in the conquest of Guatemala.
See also 
- Tlaxcaltecâ - Nahuatl for inhabitants of Tlaxcallān
- Tlaxcala - the present day state of Tlaxcala
- Tlaxcala, Tlaxcala - the present day capital of the state of Tlaxcala
- Restall and Asselbergs 2007, pp. 79–81.
- Diego Muñoz Camargo's History of Tlaxcala (Lienzo de Tlaxcala), written in or before 1585, is an illustrated codex describing the conquest of Mexico. It was painted by Tlaxcalteca artists under Spanish supervision.
- Crónica Mexicayotl was written by Fernando Alvarado Tezozomoc, in Nahuatl and Spanish, in the last decades of the sixteenth century.
- Alvarado Tezozomoc, Fernando (1944). Crónica Mexicana. Mexico: Manuel Orozco y Berra, Leyenda.
- Fargher, Lane F., Richard E. Blanton and Verenice Y. Heredia Espinoza (2010). Egalitarian Ideology and Political Power in Prehispanic Central Mexico: The Case of Tlaxcallan. "Latin American Antiquity," 21(3):227-251.
- Gibson, Charles (1952). Tlaxcala in the Sixteenth Century. New Haven: Yale University Press.
- Hassig, Ross (2001). "Xicotencatl: rethinking an indigenous Mexican hero", Estudios de Cultura Nahuatl, UNAM.
- Hicks, Frederic (2009). Land and Succession in the Indigenous Noble Houses of Sixteenth-Century Tlaxcala. Ethnohistory, 56:4, 569–588.
- Muñoz Camargo, Diego (1982) . Historia de Tlaxcala. Alfredo Chavero. México.
- Restall, Matthew; and Florine Asselbergs (2007). Invading Guatemala: Spanish, Nahua, and Maya Accounts of the Conquest Wars. University Park, Pennsylvania, USA: Pennsylvania State University Press. ISBN 978-0-271-02758-6. OCLC 165478850.