Born to die. Disease and New World Conquest, 1492–1650

ImageNoble David Cook explains, in vivid detail and sweeping scope, how the conquest of the New World was achieved by a handful of Europeans—not by the sword, but by deadly disease. The Aztec and Inca empires with their teeming millions were destroyed by a few hundred Europeans whose most important weapons, though the conquerors did not realize it at the time, were diseases previously unknown in the Americas. The end result of the colonizing experience in the Americas, whether of the Portuguese, Dutch, Spanish, English, or French, was the collapse of native society.