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Published by: jhfletcher on Nov 02, 2009
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The Inca Empire


Empire extended along the Pacific coast and Andean highlands from northern border of modern Ecuador to Maule River in central Chile Inca originated in village of Paqari-tampu, about 15mi south of Cuzco Official language: Quecha

Polytheistic religionPantheon headed by Inti-the sun god combined features of animism, fetishism, worship of nature gods offered food, clothing, and drink rituals included forms of divination, sacrifice of humans and animals

Events leading to Rise and Fall
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1438: Manco Capac established capital at Cuzco (Peru) 1400-1500: Pachacuti gained control of Andean population about 12 million people 1525: Emperor Huayna Capac died of plague; civil war broke out between two sons because no successor named 1532: Spanish arrived in Peru 1535: Empire lost

Francisco Pizarro
1527: Pizarro wanted to discover wealth; embarked on his third voyage to the New World  Sept. to Nov. 1532: The Cajamarca massacre- Pizarro led 160 Spaniards to Cuzco, slaughtering over 2,000 Inca and injuring 5,000

November 16, 1532: Atahualpa captured by Spaniards, offered gold for his freedom. Pizarro accepted more than 11 tons of gold ($6 million+) baubles, dishes, icons, ornaments, jewelry, & vases, but never released Atahualpa. July 26, 1533: Atahualpa was killed

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Emperors known by various titles, “Sapa Inca”, “Capac Apu”, “Intip Cori”, or “Inca” Manco Capac (1000 CE) Sinchi Roca (1230) Lloque Yupanqui (1260) Mayta Capac (1300) Capac Yupanqui (1320) Inca Roca (1350) Yahuar Huacac (1380) Viracocha Inca (1410) Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui (1438-71) Topa Inca Yupanqui (1471-93) Huayna Capac (1493-1525) Huascar (1527-32)  Atahualpa (1532-33)

Important People/Positions

Manco Capac (10221107)
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founder of Inca dynasty declared himself Sapa Inca, divine son of the Sun skilled warrior and leader chief religious leader exercised absolute power

Pachacuti (1438-1471)
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Usurped throne form brother Inca Urcon Considered the founder of the Inca Empire Skilled warrior and chief religious leader Claimed he was divine, son of the sun Exercised absolute power

Important Positions

Local governors responsible for exacting labor tax which could be paid by service in army, on public works, or in agricultural work Coya carried out important religious duties and governed when Sapa Inca absent Nobles ruled provinces w/ chieftains Inca conquered

Political Philosophy
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policy of forced resettlement ensured political stability officials collected taxes, enforced laws, kept records on a quipu (collection of knotted colored strings) which noted dates, events, population, crops use of road system strictly limited to government, military business all land belonged to Inca, crops allotted to specific groups, government took possession of each harvest private property forbidden, crime nonexistent, citizens never starved no written records; oral tradition preserved through generations

Economic Developments

constructed aquaducts, cities, temples, fortresses, short rock tunnels, suspension bridges, 2250mi road system metal works of alloy, copper, tin, bronze, silver gold developed important medical practices- surgery on human skull, anesthesia resources-corn, potatoes, coffee, grain

Military Expansion
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attacked, looted villages of neighboring peoples, assessing tribute program of permanent conquest, establishing garrisons among settlements of peoples whom they conquered conquered and assimilated people of Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Ecuador, and Peru gained territory south to the Titicaca Basin, north to present-day Quito making subject peoples of powerful Chancas, Quecha, kingdom of Chimu empire reached southernmost extent in central Chile, last vestiges of resistance on southern Perurian coast eliminated pushed northern boundary of empire to Ancasmayo River

religious institutions destroyed by Spanish conquerors’ campaign against idolatry Spaniards superior military technology

Cultural Conflict & Cooperation

horses, muskets, cannons, metal helmets, armor, steel swords and lances

Incan Bronze Age weapons

llamas, clubs, sticks, wooden spears and arrows

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division & discontent among Inca, Spanish played on old feuds disease brought by Europeans survivors felt gods were less powerful than those of conquerors Incans believed that disasters marked world’s end

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descendants of Inca are present day Quechuaspeaking peasants of Andes, constitute about 45% population of Peru combine farming, herding w/ simple traditional technology rural settlements three kinds: families living in midst of fields, true village communities w/ fields outside of inhabited centers, combination of two towns centers of mestizo (mixed-blood) population Indian community close-knit, families usually intermarrying; much of agricultural work done cooperatively religion is Roman Catholicism infused w/ pagan hierarchy of spirits and deities


Bernhard, Brendan. Pizarro, Orellana, and the Exploration of the Amazon. New York: Chealsea House Publishers, 1991. Editors of Time-Life Books. Incas: Lords of Gold and Glory. Alexandria: Time-Life Books, 1992. Ellis, Elizabeth Gaynor & Esler, Anthony. World History: Connections to Today. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, Inc., 2001. Ogburn, Dennis E. The Empire of the Incas. 7 Oct. 1997. 24 Feb. 2006 <http://www.millville.org/workshops_f/acker_inca/ inca.htm> "Inca." Encyclopedia Britannica. 2006. Encyclopedia Britannica Premium Service. 26 Feb. 2006 <http://www.britannica.com/eb/ article? tocId=9042237>. “Inca.” Grolier Universal Encyclopedia. Volume 5. New York: Grolier Inc., 1965.

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