Incas


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Incas

 

originally, an Indian tribe of the Quechua language group that inhabited Peru (South America) from the 11th to the 13th century; later, the ruling stratum in the state formed from a union of tribes. The formation of the Inca state—the Tawantin-suyu—dates from 1438. The state was a slave-holding despotate. The Incas levied a tribute from subjugated tribes and exploited the labor of ordinary commune members, artisans, and slaves— the yanacuna. The basic socioeconomic nucleus was the village commune—the ayllu. The land was regarded as belonging to the ruler—the Inca—whose power was encircled by a sacred halo. The first mythical ruler—Manco Capac—was revered as the sun’s offspring. The Incas used irrigation and erected buildings for military and administrative purposes. They devised a system for relaying information in the form of so-called knot-writing— quipu—as well as a rudimentary writing system. In 1532, Spanish conquerors, led by F. Pizarro, invaded the territory of the Incas. Their state was plundered and their culture destroyed. The Incas, after being subjugated by the Spaniards, became part of the Quechua nationality.

Inca architecture is known from descriptions and from numerous remains of buildings (temples, palaces, observatories, amphitheaters, and fortresses). Cyclopean structures made from colossal stones (the fortress of Sacsahuaman near Cusco) gave way to buildings of carefully hewn blocks of granite (the fortress of Pisac near Cusco). The Incas’ architecture is distinguished by the geometric simplicity of the low forms, solidity, and the almost complete lack of decoration. Vessels have been preserved, including figured ones, with brilliant black surfaces. The richest remains of the jeweler’s art, including the Curi-cancha (Golden Enclosure) of the Temple of the Sun in Cusco with plants, birds, butterflies, and figures of gold and silver, have almost completely perished.

REFERENCES

Kinzhalov, R. V. Iskusstvo drevnei Ameriki. Moscow, 1962.
Lara, J. La cultura de los Inkas [vols. l]–2. La Paz-Cochabamba, 1966–67.
References in periodicals archive ?
El desconocimiento de las lenguas andinas acentua la distancia que nos separa de los incas y las culturas antiguas del Peru.
18) La autora busca comprender como era que en el Tahuantinsuyo se construia la identidad de su elite <<a traves de medios narrativos, rituales y cosmologicos>> (19) y se concentra por ello en la narrativa que los incas tuvieron de su pasado.
Darkness fell on the Inca Festival of the Sun when the conquistadors stamped it out centuries ago.
Asi, los elementos del ciclo de los origenes reapareceran en los otros dos, de tal modo que Pachacuti, personaje clave del ciclo de la guerra de los incas contra los chancas, puede ser un arquetipo similar a Manco Capac, fundador del linaje inca.
Como se ha adelantado ya, es a traves del estudio de la influencia de las mujeres en el proceso sucesorio que la historiografia sobre los incas ha mostrado la injerencia de la elite en el ejercicio del poder.
Lo que se quiere argumentar es que mediante la presencia de un personaje como Ciquinchara dentro del relato de los eventos ocurrido previamente a la captura del Inca Atahualpa en Cajamarca, se quiebran lo estereotipos existentes con respecto a la ingenuidad, no solo de Atahualpa sino de los incas en general, frente a la presencia de los invasores europeos.
The Incas could not have had finer chroniclers of their greatest achievements.
El autor relaciona el primer caso con la tradicion de los malquis (momias de los incas muertos) conservados por las panacas reales (conjuntos familiares) y el segundo, el de Soto, con los temores de los europeos a posibles maltratos al cuerpo del gobernador de Cuba, quien, ironicamente, habia imaginado su entierro con los honores que podia otorgar su fortuna.
Con lectura del <<requerimiento>>, la exhibicion de las momias de los Incas y las solemnidades de alzarse dos veces la bandera de Castilla.
For it seems to me that if the Emperor were to desire another highway built like the one from Quito to Cuzco, or that which goes from Cuzco to Chile, I do not believe he could do it, with all his power and the men at his disposal, unless he followed the method the Incas employed.
The next three chapters are dedicated to a discussion of the role and significance of the four quarters of Tawantinsuyu and the Inca remains contained therein.