Royal Commentaries of the Incas and General History of Peru: Part One

Royal Commentaries of the Incas and General History of Peru: Part One

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Garcilaso de la Vega, the first native of the New World to attain importance as a writer in the Old, was born in Cuzco in 1539, the illegitimate son of a Spanish cavalier and an Inca princess. Although he was educated as a gentleman of Spain and won an important place in Spanish letters, Garcilaso was fiercely proud of his Indian ancestry and wrote under the name EI Inca. Royal Commentaries of the Incas is the account of the origin, growth, and destruction of the Inca empire, from its legendary birth until the death in 1572 of its last independent ruler. For the material in Part One of Royal Commentaries-the history of the Inca civilization prior to the arrival of the Spaniards-Garcilaso drew upon "what I often heard as a child from the lips of my mother and her brothers and uncles and other elders ...[of] the origin of the Inca kings, their greatness, the grandeur of their empire, their deeds and conquests, their government in peace and war, and the laws they ordained so greatly to the advantage of their vassals." The conventionalized and formal history of an oral tradition, Royal Commentaries describes the gradual imposition of order and civilization upon a primitive and barbaric world. To this Garcilaso adds facts about the geography and the flora and fauna of the land; the folk practices, religion, and superstitions; the agricultural and the architectural and engineering achievements of the people; and a variety of other information drawn from his rich store of traditional knowledge, personal observation, or speculative philosophy. Important though it is as history, Garcilaso's classic is much more: it is also a work of art. Its gracious and graceful style, skillfully translated by Harold V. Livermore, succeeds in bringing to life for the reader a genuine work of literature. Part One covers the history of the Incas up to the arrival of the more

Product details

  • Paperback | 704 pages
  • 154.94 x 236.22 x 43.18mm | 816.46g
  • University of Texas Press
  • Austin, TX, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0292770383
  • 9780292770386

Back cover copy

This book is the account of the origin, growth, and destruction of the Inca empire, from its legendary birth until the death in 1572 of its last independent ruler. The author's classic is a work of art. Its gracious and grateful style, skillfully translated by Harold V. Livermore, succeeds in bringing to life for the reader a genuine work of more

Table of contents

* Foreword by Arnold J. Toynbee * Introduction by Harold V. Livermore * Part One. Royal Commentaries of the Incas * To the Most Serene Princess * Preface to the Reader * Notes on the General Language of the Indians of Peru * Book One * I. Whether there are many worlds; it also treats of the five zones * II. Whether there are antipodes * III. How the New World was discovered * IV. The derivation of the name Peru * V. Authorities in confirmation of the name Peru * VI. What a certain author says about the name Peru * VII. Of other derivations of new names * VIII. The description of Peru * IX. The idolatry of the Indians and the gods they worshipped before the Incas * X. The great variety of other gods they had * XI. The kinds of sacrifices they made * XII. The life and government of the ancient Indians, and the things they ate * XIII. How they dressed in those ancient times * XIV. Different kinds of marriage and diverse languages; their use of poison and spells * XV. The origin of the Inca kings of Peru * XVI. The foundation of Cuzco, the imperial city * XVII. The people subdued by the first Inca Manco Capac * XVIII. On some fabulous accounts of the origin of the Incas * XIX. The author's declaration about his history * XX. The villages the first Inca ordered to be founded * XXI. The Inca's teachings to his vassals * XXII. The honorable insignia that the Inca gave to his followers * XXIII. Other more honorable insignia and the name Inca * XXIV. The names and titles the Indians gave to their kings * XXV. The testament and death of the Inca Manco Capac * XXVI. The royal names and their meanings * Book Two * I. The idolatry of the second period and its origin * II. The Incas glimpsed the true God, our Lord * III. The Incas kept a in a sacred place * IV. Of many gods wrongly attributed to the Indians by the Spanish historians * V. Of many other meanings of the word Huaca * VI. What an author says about their gods * VII. They apprehended the immortality of the soul and the universal resurrection * VIII. The things they sacrificed to the Sun * IX. The priests, rites and ceremonies, and laws attributed to the first Inca * X. The author compares what he has said with the statements of the Spanish historians * XI. They divided the empire into four districts; they made a census of their subjects * XII. Two duties performed by the decurions * XIII. On certain laws the Incas had in their government * XIV. The decurions gave an account of births and deaths * XV. The Indians deny that an Inca of the blood royal has ever committed any crime * XVI. The life and deeds of Sinchi Roca, the second Inca king * XVII. Lloque Yupanqui, the third ruler, and the meaning of his name * XVIII. Two conquests made by the Inca Lloque Yupanqui * XIX. The conquest of Hatun Colla and the pride of the Collas * XX. The great province of Chucuitu peacefully reduced; and many other provinces likewise * XXI. The sciences known to the Incas: first, astrology * XXII. They understood the measurement of the year, and the solstices and equinoxes * XXIII. They observed eclipses of the sun, and what they did at eclipses of the moon * XXIV. The medicines they had and their way of curing themselves * XXV. The medicinal herbs they used * XXVI. Their knowledge of geometry, geography, arithmetic, and music * XXVII. The poetry of Inca amautas, or philosophers, and harauicus, or poets * XXVIII. The few instruments used by the Indians for their crafts * Book Three * I. Maita Capac, the fourth Inca, conquers Tiahuanaco; the buildings there * II. Hatunpacassa is reduced and Cac-Yaviri conquered * III. Those who surrendered are pardoned; the explanation of the fable * IV. Three provinces are reduced and others conquered; colonies are established; those who use poison are punished * V. The Inca gains three provinces and wins a hard-fought battle * VI. Those of Huaichu surrender; they are courteously pardoned * VII. Many towns are reduced; the Inca orders the construction of a bridge of osiers * VIII. Many tribes are reduced voluntarily to submission by fame of the bridge * IX. The Inca gains many other great provinces, and dies in peace * X. Capac Yupanqui, the fifth king, wins many provinces in Cuntisuyu * XI. The conquest of the Aimaras [Umasuyu]; they forgive the curacas; they place landmarks on their boundaries * XII. The Inca sends an army to conquer the Quechuas; they agree to submit * XIII. They conquer many valleys on the seacoast, and punish sodomy * XIV. Two great curacas bring their dispute to the Inca and become his subjects * XV. They make a bridge of straw, reeds, and rushes over the Desaguadero; Chayanta is conquered * XVI. Various devices used by the Indians for crossing rivers and fishing * XVII. Of the conquest of five great provinces, besides other smaller ones * XVIII. Prince Inca Roca reduces many great provinces, both inland and on the coast * XIX. They take Indians from the seacoast to found colonies inland; the Inca Capac Yupanqui dies * XX. The description of the temple of the Sun and its great wealth * XXI. The cloister of the temple and the dwelling places of the Moon, stars, thunder, lightning, and rainbow * XXII. The name of the high priest, and other parts of the house * XXIII. The places for sacrifices and the threshold where they took off their sandals to enter the temple; their fountains * XXIV. The garden of gold and other riches of the temple, in imitation of which there are many others throughout the empire * XXV. The famous temple of Titicaca and its fables and allegories * Book Four * I. The house of the virgins dedicated to the Sun * II. The rules and duties of the chosen virgins * III. The veneration they had for things made by the virgins and the law against those who might violate them * IV. There were many other houses of chosen virgins; the strict application of their laws is proved * V. The service and ornaments of the virgins; they were never given in marriage to anyone * VI. The women who were favored by the Inca * VII. Other women who preserved their virginity, and widows * VIII. How they usually married and set up house * IX. The heir to the throne married his sister; the reasons they gave for this * X. Various ways of inheriting estates * XI. The weaning, shearing, and naming of their children * XII. They brought up their children without pampering them * XIII. The life and duties of married women * XIV. How women visited one another; how they kept their clothes; public women * XV. Inca Roca, the sixth king, conquers many nations, among them the Chancas and Hancohuallu * XVI. Prince Yahuar Huacac and the meaning of his name * XVII. The idols of the Anti Indians and the conquest of the Charcas * XVIII. The reasoning of the elders and how they received the Inca * XIX. Some laws made by King Inca Roca; the schools he founded in Cuzco, and some of his sayings * XX. The seventh king, the Inca "Weeping-Blood," his fears and his conquests, and the disgrace of the prince * XXI. A warning given by an apparition to the prince to be conveyed to his father * XXII. The discussions of the Incas about the apparition's message * XXIII. The rebellion of the Chancas; their ancient deeds * XXIV. The Inca abandons the city; the prince saves it * Book Five * I. How they increased the agricultural land and divided it among their vassals * II. Their system of agriculture; the festival of tilling the land assigned to the Inca and the Sun * III. The quantity of soil given to each Indian, and how it was manured * IV. How they shared water for irrigation; they punished idlers and slackers * V. The tribute they paid the Inca and the reckoning of their bins * VI. Clothing, footwear, and arms were supplied for the warriors * VII. Gold, silver, and other objects of value were not offered as tribute, but as presents * VIII. The storing of supplies and their use * IX. They supplied clothing for their subjects; there were no beggars * X. The system of stock-raising and division of the flocks; wild animals * XI. The laws and ordinances of the Incas for the benefit of their vassals * XII. How they conquered and civilized new vassals * XIII. How they appointed officials for every kind of duty * XIV. Their system of dealing with property, both public and private * XV. How they paid their tribute, the amount of it, and the laws concerning it * XVI. The system of collecting tribute; how the Inca rewarded the curacas for the precious objects they offered him * XVII. Inca Viracocha has news of his enemies, and of assistance coming to him * XVIII. A very bloody battle; it is won by a stratagem * XIX. The liberality of Prince Inca Viracocha after the victory * XX. The prince pursues the enemy, returns to Cuzco, has an interview with his father, and dispossesses him of the empire * XXI. On the name Viracocha, and why it was applied to the Spaniards * XXII. Inca Viracocha has a temple built in memory of his uncle, the phantom * XXIII. A famous painting; the rewards given to the Inca's allies * XXIV. New provinces subdued by the Inca; and an irrigation channel to water the grazing land * XXV. The Inca visits his empire; ambassadors come and offer him their vassalage * XXVI. The flight of the brave Hancohuallu from the Inca empire * XXVII. Colonies settled on Hancohuallu's lands; the vale of Y'ucay described * XXVIII. He names his first-born, and prophesies the coming of the Spaniards * XXIX. The death of Inca Viracocha; the author saw his body * Book Six * I. The fabric and adornment of the royal houses * II. They copied all sorts of objects in gold and silver with which to adorn the royal palaces * III. The accounts of the royal household; and those who carried the king's litter * IV. Halls used as meeting places and other aspects of the royal palaces * V. How the kings were buried; their obsequies lasted a year * VI. The solemn hunting excursions made by the kings throughout the country * VII. Posts and relays, and the messages they carried * VIII. They counted by threads and knots; the accountants were extremely accurate * IX. What they recorded in their accounts, and how these were read * X. Inca Pachacutec visits his empire; he conquers the Huanca tribe * XI. Other provinces won by the Inca; their customs and the punishment of sodomy * XII. Buildings, laws, and new conquests made by Inca Pachacutec * XIII. The Inca subdues the hostile provinces by hunger and military strategy * XIV. The good curaca Huamanchucu, and how he was subdued * XV. The people of Cajamarca resist, but eventually surrender * XVI. The conquest of Yauyu, and triumph of the Incas, uncle and nephew * XVII. Two valleys are subdued; Chincha replies arrogantly * XVIII. The obstinacy of Chincha; its final surrender * XIX. The ancient conquests and false boasting of the Chinchas * XX. The principal feast of the Sun, and how they prepared for it * XXI. They worshipped the Sun, went to his house, and sacrificed a lamb * XXII. The auguries of their sacrifices, and the use of fire * XXIII. How they drank to one another, and in what order * XXIV. How the Incas were armed knights, and the tests they were submitted to * XXV. They were required to know how to make their own arms and their shoes * XXVI. The prince underwent the ordeal, and was treated more severely than the rest * XXVII. The Inca awarded the insignia to the leading candidate, and a member of his family to the rest * XXVIII. The insignia of the kings and other Incas, and the masters of the novices * XXIX. The surrender of Chuquimancu, lord of four valleys * XXX. The valleys of Pachacamac and Rimac, and their idols * XXXI. They summon Cuismancu to capitulate; his answer and the terms * XXXII. They go to conquer King Chimu; a cruel war is waged * XXXIII. The obstinacy and misfortunes of the great Chimu, and how he surrendered * XXXIV. The Inca aggrandizes his empire; his activities until his death * XXXV. He increased the number of schools, and made laws for their good government * XXXVI. Many other laws of Inca Pachacutec; his words of wisdom * Book Seven * I. The Incas established colonies; they had two languages * II. The heirs of chiefs were brought up at court; the reasons for this * III. The language of the court * IV. The usefulness of the language of the court * V. The third solemn festival in honor of the sun * VI. The fourth festival; the fasts; and their way of purging their ills * VII. A nocturnal rite for expelling ills from the city * VIII. The description of the imperial city of Cuzco * IX. The city contained the description of the whole empire * X. The site of the schools, that of three royal palaces, and that of the chosen virgins * XI. The wards and houses to the west of the stream * XII. Two donations made by the city for charitable purposes * XIII. King Inca Yupanqui seeks to make a new conquest * XIV. The events of the expedition to Musu until its completion * XV. Traces found of this expedition * XVI. Other unfortunate occurrences in the same province * XVII. The Chirihuana tribe, its life and customs * XVIII. Preparations for the conquest of Chile * XIX. The Incas win the regions as far as the valley called Chile; the messages and replies they exchanged with other new tribes * XX. A cruel battle between the Incas and other tribes; the first Spaniards who discovered Chile * XXI. The rebellion of Chile against Governor Valdivia * XXII. A new order of battle; the stratagem of the old Indian captain * XXIII. The Indians prevail owing to a treacherous plan executed by one of their number * XXIV. Valdivia slain; the war has continued for fifty years * XXV. New misfortunes in the kingdom of Chile * XXVI. The peaceful life and occupations of King Inca Yupanqui until his death * XXVII. The fortress of Cuzco; the size of its stones * XXVIII. The three circumvallations, the most remarkable part of the work * XXIX. Three towers, the master masons, and the Weary Stone * Book Eight * I. The conquest of the province of Huacrachucu, and the meaning of its name * II. The conquest of the first villages in the province of Chachapoya * III. The conquest of other villages and of other barbarous tribes * IV. The conquest of three large, warlike, and recalcitrant provinces * V. The conquest of the Canari province; tis riches and its temple * VI. The conquest of many other large provinces as far as the confines of Quito * VII. The Inca conquers Quito; Prince Huaina Capac is present * VIII. The three marriages of Huaina Capac; the death of his father; his sayings * IX. Maize and what they call rice, and other seeds * X. The vegetables that grow in the earth * XI. The fruit of larger [plants and] trees * XII. The mulli tree and the pimento * XIII. The maguey tree and its uses * XIV. The banana, the pineapple, and other fruits * XV. The precious leaf called coca, and tobacco * XVI. Their tame animals; the flock they kept * XVII. The wild flocks and other creatures * XVIII. Lions, bears, tigers, and monkeys * XIX. Land and water fowl, tame and wild * XX. Partridges, pigeons, and other lesser birds * XXI. Varieties of parrots; their talkativeness * XXII. Four famous rivers; the fish found in Peruvian rivers * XXIII. Emeralds, turquoises, and pearls * XXIV. Gold and silver * XXV. Quicksilver, and how metal was founded before the use of quicksilver * Book Nine * I. Huaina Capac orders a golden cable to be made; the reason for this and its purpose * II. Ten of the coastal valleys give in of their own free will, and Tumbez surrenders * III. The punishment of those who killed the officials left by Tupac Inca Yupanqui * IV. The Inca visits his empire, consults the oracles, and gains the island of Puna * V. The people of Puna kill Huaina Capac's captains * VI. The punishment of the rebels * VII. The mutiny of the Chachapoyas, and Huaina Capac's magnanimity * VIII. The gods and customs of the Manta tribe; their subjugation and that of other savage peoples * IX. The giants of those parts and how they met their deaths * X. What Huaina Capac said about the Sun * XI. The revolt of the Caranques; their punishment * XII. Huaina Capac makes his son Atahuallpa king of Quito * XIII. Two famous roads in Peru * XIV. Huaina Capac heard that the Spaniards were off the coast * XV. The testament and death of Huaina Capac and the prophecy of the arrival of the Spaniards * XVI. Mares and horses; how they were bred in the early days and their great value * XVII. Cows and oxen; their prices, high and low * XVIII. Camels, asses, and goats; their prices and their breeding in Peru * XIX. Pigs; their great fertility * XX. Sheep and domestic cats * XXI. Rabbits and pure-bred dogs * XXII. Rats; their great numbers * XXIII. Fowls and pigeons * XXIV. Wheat * XXV. The vine; the first man to grow grapes in Cuzco * XXVI. Wine; the first man to make it in Cuzco; its price * XXVII. The olive; its first importer into Peru * XXVIII. The fruits of Spain and the sugarcane * XXIX. Garden plants and herbs; their size * XXX. Flax, asparagus, carrots, and aniseed * XXXI. New names for various racial groups * XXXII. Huascar Inca demands that his brother Atahuallpa shall do homage to him * XXXIII. Atahuallpa's devices to allay his brother's suspicions * XXXIV. Huascar is warned and calls up his warriors * XXXV. The battle of the Incas; Atahuallpa's victory and his cruelties * XXXVI. The cause of Atahuallpa's atrocities and their most cruel effects * XXXVII. The same cruel treatment is extended to the women and children of the royal blood * XXXVIII. Some members of the royal blood escape Atahuallpa's cruelties * XXXIX. Atahuallpa's cruelty extends to the servants of the royal house * XL. The surviving descendants of the royal blood of the Incas * Indexshow more