For many years, anthropologists [ many of them] have doubted traditional accounts of human sacrifice, cannibalism, torture, and general irritability among MesoAmerican Indians – mainly the Aztecs and Maya.
Progress in archaeology and the translation of the Mayan script have greatly weakened this trend. When you find towers of skulls, racks of skulls, skull masks, you start to think that something about the Aztec empire wasn’t exactly kosher. Same when you find skeletons of young women at the bottom of Mayan cenotes.
Who to believe? Conquistadors. And Bernal Diaz is fun: he had a hell of a story to tell.