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Michoacan History, Mexico

The town of Michoacán has always been famous for its residents who were P'urhépecha or the better known Tarascans. The town of Michoacán was the home town for these indigenous inhabitants. Today’s Michoacán has worked hard to preserve the signatures which the indigenous P'urhépecha people have left in different parts of the city. P'urhépecha used to live in this city during the pre - Columbian times. The kingdom which these P'urhépecha made is said to be one of the most happening kingdoms for the Meso - American world.

The name of this city derived from different local words which could be broken to understand its meaning. Michin (which means fish), hua (which means own), and can (which means place in local language). During those days fishing was an important business in and this word actually meant “Place where people do fishing” and hence Michoacán was the most suitable word for this city.

It was during the early years of the 16th century when the Spanish rulers entered the country of Mexico and during those days they called the P'urhépecha people by the name of Tarascos. This word Tarascos was actually inspired from the word of their local language which was tarascué (which means ‘brother in law’ in English language). All this started when the locals of this city called the Spanish with the same word Tarascos. On the other hand, the Spanish took it otherwise and started to call the locals of the city by the tag of Tarascos. The English version of Tarascos became Tarascan and even till today the English version is being heavily used when it comes to expressing P'urhépecha people.

The language which was used by P'urhépecha people is said to be an isolated language which does not belong to any language family. Even many researchers proved that the language used by P'urhépecha people relates to no other existing language of today.

It was 1324 A.D. when P'urhépecha had proven themselves to be a strong force in the western region of Mexico. The first capital city for this dynasty was located around 7000 feet above sea level and it was called Pátzcuaro. It was the arrival of the Spanish in the year 1522 when the P'urhépecha dynasty started to decline.

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