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Sometime in the 1100s started the Inca empire to grow out around the city Cucso. It was a Quechua-speaking indigenous peoples and pre-Columbian cultures statehood in western South America. During 1200 - and 1300's constituted inka one of many small, rival hövdingdömmen that grew out of the rubble of the Huari Empire. In the 1430s began inkahärskaren Pachacuti a new empire, which in less than a hundred years would lead us to the pre-Columbian America's largest and best managed state. According to the myths Pachacuti was the ninth in a divine dynasty, founded by Manco Capac and ultimately by the sun god Inti. From its original core area around Cuzco in the highlands sydpeuranska extended throw-general successively under three successful generations of wealthy ruler Pachacuti 1438-71, Topa Inca Huayna Capac 1471-93 and 1493-1525, so that, at Huayna Capac's death covered the entire Andean area from northern Ecuador to Chile CENTRAL. A stretch of 460-mil. When Huayna Capac died suddenly in Ecuador in an epidemic, probably ultimately derived from the Spaniards, broke out between Huascar and Atahualpa Pretender a civil war that significantly facilitated the Spanish conquest in 1532, led by Francisco Pizarro. Between 1537 and 1572 was hiding in the jungle state vilcamba an exile government of the descendants of Huayna Capac.
It is estimated that Incas population at most, up to 10 million, but that decimated a tenth in the decades immediately following the conquest. The vast area that conquered the Incas inhabited by a very large number of ethnic groups, speaking different languages ​​now extinct, it was inkaväldet that caused the wide spread as quechuaspråket today. Most of our knowledge of the Incas from Spanish frönikörer verse same in 1500 - and 1600's, especially valuable is the compilations of Pedro de Cieza de Leon and Bernabé Cobo, as well as the many drawings in the 1400-page manuscript of Indian Felipe Guamán Poma de Ayala , completed sometime between 1567 and 1615th In such form, parts of the Inca's own history and mythology preserved, with detailed description of such the different rulers and wars of conquest of the rich ceremonial life in the capital, Cuzco.

Material culture

Incas material culture was based on two thousand year old Andean traditions. Using fotplog and chop cultivated the more than 40 crops, of which the most important was the potatoes (in the higher valleys) and corn (the lower). In many places were covered the steep hillsides of thin soil terraces, carefully constructed of stone, and irrigation channels could be endless. Inca lacked draft animals, but they had several species of domestic animals than any other pre-Columbian indigenous peoples (llama, alpaca, dog, guinea pig, duck). Some foods were dried for storage, including meat and potatoes to Charkia to chuño. Inka pottery was very sturdy and fitted with geometric patterns in white, red and black, a typical form is the large, bottom pointed amphora with two handles. Of wood carved to the characteristic beaker (kero), which was often decorated färgrant. Incas clothes were woven originally of wool from llamas, alpacas and vicuna, but over time, imports of cotton from coastal areas. The colorful compi-fabric was an important treasure, which could accumulate as wealth and given away as part of various social transactions. Among jewelry include the cylinders of gold or wood, which the higher layers bar in his pierced earlobes as a sign of status and who gave them the Spanish name orejones ('long ears'). Metal processing (gold, silver, bronze, copper) were more diverse than in any other direction than in America and was the main attraction of the gold-hungry Spaniards.
The overall craftsmanship of Cuzco was built on inkahärskarnas tend to move where specialists from the conquered peoples, and thus absorb more andniska traditions. For Cuczos splendor also contributed as smiths from the Chimu Empire and stonemasons from the old hövdingedömena in Titicacabäckenet. In the region of Cuzco was built ordinary residential buildings of stone and mud or adobe, and the roofs of Ichu-grass pointed thatched roofs. Public building consisted of boulders worked with stone tools, assembled without cement, but accurate enough for barely a knife edge can be inserted in the seams on the walls outside. Inkaarkitekternas accuracy characterizes both palaces, temples and tombs as defense plants, warehouses and agricultural terraces. Well-preserved example of Incan architecture in the administrative and ceremonial centers such as Machu Picchu, Ollantaytambo and the capital, Cuzco. In Cuzco are: the giant, flerhörniga boulder barricades Sacsahuamán, and the perfectly polished walls of the formerly adorned with gold plates so-called Temple of the Sun, Coricancha. ('The golden fence'). The architecture often seems to have been designed to facilitate astronomical observations relevant to the agricultural year, such as from inkahärskarens throne on the square Haucaypata in Cuzco.

Social, political and economic organization

The basic social unit of the Inca Empire was a COGNATE, land ownership and essentially endogm family group (ayllu), who worshiped a common ancestor, which in modified form still of great importance among Andean Indians. In its narrowest meaning was an ayllu of several extended families, each of which resides in a cluster of houses, built in the form of a fence (Cancha). Social groupings of types and sizes were generally dualistic, both local and family groups Cuzco state elements, Hanan ('upper') and Hurin ('Lower'), had the characters of the halves. Each inkahärskare left behind by his harem of wives a substantial, self-ayllu who worshiped his mummified body. The number of wives was a measure of prestige, and the ruler was able to provide specially selected men as gifts to loyal subjects. The throne was inherited by a suitable son by primary wife, who fr.om Topa Inca was the ruler's full sister. Directly under the ruler obey the governors of "Fyrdelsrikets" (Tawantinsuyu) parts, which met in Cusco: Chinchasuyu (northwest), Cuntisuyu (southwest), Antisuyu (northeast) and Collasuyu (southeast). In those obeyed a number of provincial governors, and these in turn, a hierarchy of officials (Curacao), responsible for between 100 and 10 000 taxpayers. Discipline in the kingdom was maintained partly by military force, partly by inkadynastins claim to divine origin, but above all by the ideology that made the relationship between ruler and a subject as a reciprocal, mutually binding exchange.
Many people joined the Empire on a purely diplomatic means, through the governor was installed as curacao and enjoyed the Emperor's gifts, as concubines, lyxhantverk, servants, llama, land and other privileges. Conquered land was divided into three parts for each local population, state religion, culture end and the ruler himself. Tax paid in the form of work, including on public construction projects and the ruler fields. The work was initiated by the sheriff himself and won the May sun and gifts, which were exploiting to remind farmers equal labor guilds. In order to suppress insurrection tendencies moved whole villages, so that the loyal and rebel groups changed places.
The major textile and food stocks provided a social security, which likened to socialism. Of great importance was also the country's well-functioning communication system, which allowed the state-controlled flow of goods, rapid troop movements and effective dissemination of information. Inca did not use the wheel, but it cleverly constructed road system was well suited to pedestrians and llama caravans, lame animal can carry up to 50 kg and travels from 15 to 20 km per day. The ruler himself was traveling in the litter. Over river gorges built suspension bridges of doubted, 40 cm thick repkablar. The Station offered protection and supplies for suitable day trips. Inkaarméns food stocks were used by the Spaniards for ten years after the conquest. Relay Messenger was able to convey messages with a speed of 240 km a day. Accounts were using the knot in writing.


The high priest was usually a close relative of the ruler. In creating the god Viracoacha obeyed the sun god Inti, god of thunder Illapa, Moon-Mama Killa, a number of star-gods and earth mother Pachamama. Each community also worshiped a large number of sacred places and objects, which usually consisted of rocks, mountain crest or sources. Chronicler Cobo lists about 350 such places of worship near Cuzco, organized along more than 40 thought-out "lines" (ceques), all of which emanated from the Sun Temple Coricancha. Each line of sacrificial sites belonging to a particular ayllu. The holy lines seem to have covered the whole country, with branches in numerous local ceque system. Offerings consisted mostly of food, May sun, coca leaves, wool, clothing, shells, etc., but also animal sacrifice as guinea pigs and llamas were common, especially at key times there were human sacrifices (mostly children). Selected women were mamacona (mentioned as "sun virgins"), who devoted their lives to produce textiles, etc. to the May sun ruler and sun cults. In Cuzco celebrated major festivals and ceremonies in the square Haucaypata; of these were in addition to offering rides a hard majsölsdrickande and various ritual dances and songs with colorful costumes and masks, accompanied by brass and percussion instruments. In some places, the elements of the Inca ceremonial life has survived almost unchanged to this day.


Celebrations were common in inkaimperiet. These festivals were important to the people, and many important rituals were crucial to the decision, if such a long journey:

• A festival was held when the corn began to pick up from the earth. It was done to the harvest would not be destroyed by frost.
• They held ceremonies to the wedding that lasted six days. Also, during the upbringing of a child when the child was over two years. The hair on the baby's head is cut out of the village's oldest by age and rank. A gift given to the child of all that medvärkande in the ceremony. After the hair was removed starting a community celebration of three to four days.
• The largest Inca festival held during the summer solstice. All fasted for three days before the ceremony could start, and during this time were no fires lit in the houses. At a certain time would be empathetic to arrive with the entire city's population. They waited for the sun would go up, one of their major deities, and as soon as the first beam synthesis was music, dancing and screaming. After the ceremony the chief priest offered a sacrifice to the sun, which usually was a llama. The priest opened the body and predicted that future.

Ship with silver and gold

1513 and conquered the Inca Empire was destroyed by the Spaniards. They seized quantities of art objects of pure gold. Everything was melted down and shipped to Europe. The vast quantities of precious metals would be retrieved from Potosi in present Bolivia. There, discovered the Spaniards in 1545 one of the world's richest silver deposits. Ten thousand enslaved Indians were forced every year to work in small galleries.
During the mine's 150-year heyday was 16 million kg silver to Spain. Potosi grew into a metropolis.

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