"As we got among the houses and saw what a large town it was, larger than
any we had yet seen, we were struck with admiration. It looks like a garden
with luxuriant vegetation, and the streets were so full of men and women
who had come to see us, that we gave thanks to God at having discovered
such a country.
Our scouts, who were on horseback, reached a great plaza with courts, where they had prepared our quarters, and it seems that during the last few days they had been whitewashed and burnished, a thing they knew well how to do. . ."
Bernal Diaz del Castillo, The Discovery and Conquest of Mexico, XXIX, page 86.
"When they saw that
we were in earnest, the fat cacique and his captains told all the warriors
to get ready to defend their idols, and when they saw that we intended
to ascend a lofty cue--which stood high and was approached by many steps--the
fat cacique and the other chieftains were beside themselves with fury and
called out to Cortes to know why he wanted to destroy their idols, for
if we dishonoured them and overthrew them, that they would all perish and
we along with them...
The words were hardly out of their mouths before more than fifty of us soldiers had clambered up [to the temple] and had thrown down their idols which came rolling down the steps shattered to pieces. The idols looked like fearsome dragons, as big as calves, and there were other figures half men and half great dogs of hideous appearance. When they saw their idols broken to pieces the caciques and priests who were with them wept and covered their eyes, and in the Totonac tongue they prayed their gods to pardon them, saying that the matter was no longer in their hands and they were not to blame."
Bernal Diaz del Castillo, The Discovery and Conquest of Mexico, XXXV, pages 103-104.
Click on the pictures