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How the Inca Empire came to an end
The Conquest of Peru was the historic process of military conquest of the Inca Empire by Spanish conquistadores and their native allies. After years of preliminary exploration and military skirmishes, 182 Spanish soldiers under Francisco Pizarro and their native allies ambushed the emperor of the Inca Empire and captured him in the 1532 Battle of Cajamarca. It was the first step in a long campaign that took decades of fighting to subdue the mightiest empire in the Americas. In subsequent years Spain extended its rule over the Empire.
When I set out to write for the people of today and of the future, about the conquest and discovery that our Spaniards made here in Peru, I could not but reflect that I was dealing with the greatest matters one could possibly write about in all of creation as far as secular history goes. Where have men ever seen the things they have seen here? And to think that God should have permitted something so great to remain hidden from the world for so long in history, unknown to men, and then let it be found, discovered and won all in our own time!
—Pedro Cieza de León, Chronicles of Peru
The houses are more than two hundred paces in length, and very well built, being surrounded by strong walls, three times the height of a man. The roofs are covered with straw and wood, resting on the walls. The interiors are divided into eight rooms, much better built than any we had seen before. Their walls are of very well cut stones and each lodging is surrounded by its masonry wall with doorways, and has its fountain of water in an open court, conveyed from a distance by pipes, for the supply of the house. In front of the plaza, towards the open country, a stone fortress is connected with it by a staircase leading from the square to the fort. Towards the open country there is another small door, with a narrow staircase, all within the outer wall of the plaza. Above the town, on the mountain side, where the houses commence, there is another fort on a hill, the greater part of which is hewn out of the rock. This is larger than the other, and surrounded by three walls, rising spirally.
—Francisco Xeres, Massacre, Gold and Civil War
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