Folio 42r shows the scene of a Spanish conquistador, identified by his armor, spears, and beards, and an Aztec, identifiable by his costume, at the recognizable double temples of the Templo Mayor, each depicted with a weapon to show the battle that took place.[i]
The image of the conquest stands as a contrast to the image of the foundation of Tenochtitlan 20 pages and almost 200 years prior. While the foundation image appears to take place in real space, the conquest is given an architectural structure, seen around the image with an aerial view of steps that seems to frame the figures within the temple, even as the twin peaks of the temple are seen in the background of the image as well, in red and blue.
The Spanish conquest is given its own full page, giving it high importance, but after this there are several pages that break with the year-count and are solely devoted to text. Once again, after almost five full pages of text, the year-count resumes, but this time the events are more densely depicted, and there is also more text. This can be attributed to the fact that this was a time of many drastic changes, but also can be related to the importance of written language in the book. The scribe, more-so it would seem than the illuminators, placed heavy importance on the events involving the Spanish.
[i] Lori Boornazian Diel, The Tira de Tepechpan: Negotiating Place under Aztec and Spanish Rule (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2008), 75.