So he arrived in the Aztec year 1-Reed
The Aztecs had two separate calendars, a 365-day cycle and a 260-day cycle.
Days in the 260-day cycle were represented by a number from 1-13 and a symbol (Reed is the English translation of one of these symbols). There were 20 symbols giving 260 (13x20) unique combinations of numbers and symbols before the cycle would repeat.
Each 365-day year was assigned the number and symbol of its last day. These year names would repeat after 52 years (known as a calendar round). A 1-Reed year is the 13th year of a 52-year cycle. The specific 1-Reed year that Cortés arrived in Mexico was 1519.
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