The History of the Incas

The History of the Incas

PEDRO SARMIENTO DE GAMBOA
BRIAN S. BAUER
VANIA SMITH
BRIAN S. BAUER
JEAN-JACQUES DECOSTER
Copyright Date: 2007
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.7560/714137
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  • Book Info
    The History of the Incas
    Book Description:

    The History of the Incas may be the best description of Inca life and mythology to survive Spanish colonization of Peru. Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa, a well-educated sea captain and cosmographer of the viceroyalty, wrote the document in Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire, just forty years after the arrival of the first Spaniards. The royal sponsorship of the work guaranteed Sarmiento direct access to the highest Spanish officials in Cuzco. It allowed him to summon influential Incas, especially those who had witnessed the fall of the Empire. Sarmiento also traveled widely and interviewed numerous local lords (curacas), as well as surviving members of the royal Inca families. Once completed, in an unprecedented effort to establish the authenticity of the work, Sarmiento's manuscript was read, chapter by chapter, to forty-two indigenous authorities for commentary and correction.

    The scholars behind this new edition (the first to be published in English since 1907) went to similarly great lengths in pursuit of accuracy. Translators Brian Bauer and Vania Smith used an early transcript and, in some instances, the original document to create the text. Bauer and Jean-Jacques Decoster's introduction lays bare the biases Sarmiento incorporated into his writing. It also theorizes what sources, in addition to his extensive interviews, Sarmiento relied upon to produce his history. Finally, more than sixty new illustrations enliven this historically invaluable document of life in the ancient Andes.

    eISBN: 978-0-292-79548-8
    Subjects: History, Archaeology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-xii)
  3. Preface
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
    BRIAN S. BAUER and VANIA SMITH
  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xv-xviii)
  5. Introduction: PEDRO SARMIENTO DE GAMBOA AND THE HISTORY OF THE INCAS
    (pp. 1-34)
    BRIAN S. BAUER and JEAN-JACQUES DECOSTER

    The History of the Incas¹ [1572] is one of the most important manuscripts surviving from the Spanish Conquest period of Peru. Written in Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire, just forty years after the arrival of the first Spaniards in the city, this document contains extremely detailed descriptions of Inca history and mythology. It was written, on the orders of Viceroy Francisco de Toledo, by the highly educated Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa, a sea captain and royal cosmographer of the viceroyalty.

    The royal sponsorship of the work guaranteed Sarmiento direct access to the highest Spanish officials in Cuzco. It...

  6. Second Part of the General History Called Indica
    (pp. 35-212)

    Among the [various] qualities, most sovereign and Catholic Philip,¹ that gloriously decorate princes and place them in the highest esteem, there are three that are the greatest (as stated by the father of Latin eloquence): largesse, beneficence, and generosity.² The consuls of Rome had these on their coats of arms as their highest praise. Hence in the Plaza of Trajan they sculpted the following statement in marble from Mount Quirinal: “Generosity is the most powerful attribute in a prince.”³ The kings, who want to be loved by their own [people] and feared by others, made great efforts to acquire the...

  7. Appendix 1: SAMPLE TRANSLATION
    (pp. 213-214)
  8. Appendix 2: EDITIONS OF PEDRO SARMIENTO DE GAMBOA’S THE HISTORY OF THE INCAS
    (pp. 215-215)
  9. Appendix 3: THE RULE OF THE INCAS, FOLLOWING DATES PROVIDED BY SARMIENTO DE GAMBOA
    (pp. 216-216)
  10. Appendix 4: THE INCAS OF CUZCO, FOLLOWING INFORMATION PROVIDED BY SARMIENTO DE GAMBOA
    (pp. 217-218)
  11. Notes
    (pp. 219-242)
  12. Glossary
    (pp. 243-246)
  13. Bibliography
    (pp. 247-254)
  14. Index
    (pp. 255-266)