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A Peruvian Chief of State: Manco Inca (1515-1545)

Author(s): George Kubler

Source: The Hispanic American Historical Review, Vol. 24, No. 2 (May, 1944), pp. 253-276
Published by: Duke University Press
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When Pizarro appointed the young boy Tupac Hualpa

to the Incaship in September, 1533,' Indian society, at least
in the vestiges of its old formal structure, passed out of in-
digenous control and became subordinate to the sovereignty
of the Spanish Crown. Tupac Hualpa went- through the
motions of giving fealty to the King of Spain, and receiving
that of the- chiefs assembled at Cajamarca.2 He also com-
plied with the traditional ritual, assuming office after a four-
day fast by wearing the red llacutu (fringed headband).3 He
was one of the brothers of Huascar who had taken refuge
with Pizarro in fear of Atahualpa. The accounts all agree
that he was poisoned at Jauja by Chalcuchima, the powerful
commander of Atahualpa's forces. Tupac Hualpa had no
control over Indian affairs, but his appointment served a
double purpose for the Spaniards. Through him a legal claim
to eminent domain for the Crown over all Peru was estab-
lished via the dynastic line of Cuzco. In the second place, his
nomination perpetuated the civil conflict between the members
of the two great Indian factions, strengthening the Spanish
hand by promoting Indian division.
After Tupac Hualpa's death, Pizarro offered Chalcuchima
the regency of a young Inca to be chosen by Chalcuchima from
* This study forms part of the history of the Quechuas in colonial Peru, of
which other parts will appear in the Handbook of South American Indians, Bureau
of American Ethnology, Smithsonian Institution. In it an effort has been made
to transpose the data of viceregal government into the terms of colonial pressures
upon Indian society.
1 Francisco de Xdrez, Narrative of the Conquest of Peru (London, 1872),
pp. 106-107; Juan de Velasco, Historia del Beino de Quito (3 vols., Quito, 1841-
1844), II, 107.
2 Pedro Sancho, An Account of the Conquest of Peru (New York, 1917),
p. 23.
8 Pedro Pizarro, Relation of the Discovery and Conquest of the Kingdoms of
Peru (2 vols., New York, 1921), I, 227-230.

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amonig the sons of Atahualpa.4 With the other hand, how-

ever, Pizarro encouraged the men of Cuzco in their hopes of
being awarded the vacant Incaship. In other words, Pizarro
manipulated the incumbency according to the strategic neces-
sities of the moment, in a fashion that contributed even fur-
ther to its degradation. His final choice fell upon Manco
Inca, a legitimate younger son of Huayna Capac,5 belonging
to the faction of Huascar.
Manco Inca met Pizarro under peculiar conditions. Dur-
ing the approach to Cuzco, Pizarro found his road beset by
two Indian armies. One, the last remnant of Atahualpa's
forces, under Quizquiz of Quito, blocked any northward re-
treat, and the other, under Manco Inca, prevented further
progress along the road to Cuzco.6 It was an impasse in
which the concerted Indian forces might have delayed the
fulfillment of the Conquest for many years. Fortunately for
Pizarro, Manco decided to join his destiny with that of the
Europeans, motivated by the desire for vengeance upon the
men of Quito.7 In this new guise, the war of the brothers
entered another phase, and Indian strategy was governed by
the old issue that had broken both Atahualpa anld Huascar.
Before two years had passed, however, Manco reversed his
policy, initiating his lifelong campaign of revolt against
Spanish rule with the seige of Cuzco in 1536.
By accepting Pizarro's appointment, Manco created still
another conflict in Indian society. Not only did the act per-
petuate an old struggle, but it laid the foundations of a new
quarrel within the party of Huascar, between Manco and
Paullu Tupac.8 Paullu was the remaining legitimate son of
Huayna Capac. He was slightly younger than Manco, and
when the latter was made Inca, Paullu became his enemy.
4Sancho, op. cit., pp. 52-57.
5Romulo Cuneo-Vidal, Historia de las guer-as de los ulltiios Incas peruanos
contra el poder'espalol (Barcelona, 1925), p. 25.
8 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 237, places the event at Vileaconga Pass.
7Sancho, op. cit., pp. 99-101; Father Crist6bal de Molina (of Santiago),
."Relacion . . . Lima," Colecoidn de libros y documentos referentes a la historia
del PerfA, I (1916), 156-157. For a detailed account of Manco Inca's coronation,
see Miguel de Estete, El descubrirniento y conquista del Peri4 (Quito, 1918).
8 C'uneo-Vidal, op. cit., p. 29.

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Paullu was the steadfast Indian ally of the Almagrist factioni

after 1537, participating in many campaigns, and ultimately
receiving the llautu from Almagro as the Inca Paullu. His
career forms an important chapter in the history of that por-
tion of Indian society which, in opposition to the separatists
under Manco, readily accepted Spanish rule. In Manco 's
case, however, the fragmentation of Huascar's party in two
sub-factions created a situation whereby Indian resistance
was doomed to ultimate failure for lack of unity. Later on,
of course, Manco attempted to play Spaniish parties against
one another, but he never discovered in Spanish disagree-
ments the multiplicity of hatreds that vitiated Indian life.
Manco Inca's early history is obscure. Born in 1515, in
the region of Lake Titicaca,9 though legitimate, he was much
too young to hold any claim to the Incaship in competition
with his far older brothers. In 1532-1533, he had been en-
gaged in the conquest of the Antisuyu in Bolivia.10 Here he
had gained, not only military experience, but a knowledge of
the eastern Andean tribes that was to be of great use to him
during the years of separatist rule in the mountains of Vilca-
bamba (1536-1546).
During the first year when Manco remained directly under
Spanish control (1534-1535), he spent little time in Cuzco,
although he had been granted lands there.1' His behavior
was governed by the wish to use the Spaniards in the destruc-
tion of the men of Quito. He was absent from Cuzco durin
long months, and each visit to the capital reinforced his grow-
ing conviction that the ultimate enemy was not Quizquiz, but
Pizarro himself. Yet Manco was unable or reluctant to treat
Captain Pedro de Cieza de Leon, The Travels of Pedro de Cieza de Leon,
A.D. 1532-1550 (contained in the 1st part of his chronicle of Peru) (London,
1865), Chap. 88.
10 Alonso Enriquez de Guzinan, The Life and Acts of Don Alonso Enriquez de
Guznm6n. (London, 1862), p. 99 (Manco was twenty years old in 1535). See also
Cuineo-Vidal, op. cit., p. 35. Both Garcilaso de la Vega, Bistoria general del
Peru (Madrid, 1722), II, Chaps. V-VII, and Juan Oliva Anello, Histoire du
P`rov& (Paris, 1857), pp. 102-106, gave a peculiar and unreliable account of
Manco 's early relationship to Pizarro. Both these sources derive from the
account (now lost) by the Jesuit Blas Valera.
11 Fernando Montesinos, Anales del Pert (2 vols., Madrid, 1906), I, 111.
These encomienda grants were revoked in 1539.

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all Spaniards as unconditional enemies, and he chose to enter

a questionable alliance with Almagro some time before the
outbreak of the general rebellion under his direction. It was
during the pursuit of Quizquiz towards Quito in 1534, that
Manco, serving as Indian auxiliary to the Spanish force
under the command of Almagro and Hernando de Soto, first
came to know Almagro well.'2 Later, in Cuzco, Manco be-
came obligated to Almagro by the fact that the Spaniard
arranged the murder of two of Manco's brothers, at the Inca's
request, in order to clarify any future rivalries for the suc-
cession.'3 Manco was thus indebted to Almagro, and an alli-
ance grew up, in which Almagro probably manipulated Manco
in schemes intended to sap Francisco Pizarro's strength.'4
In the end, Manco's partiality to Almagro's cause against
Pizarro led directly to 'his own assassination by the Alma-
grist- refugees in Vileabamba during 1545.
In 1535, Manco showed signs of increasing restlessness.
As a house prisoner, when he left Cuzco without permission,
he was recaptured and abused by his guardians.'5 During
one of these sorties, Manco was accused of murdering some
Christian travelers, and this was the pretext for his imprison-
ment by Juan Pizarro in the fortress of Sacsahuaman. Mean-
while, Hernando Pizarro, returning from Spain, sought
Manco's friendship for reasons of his own, and secured his
release.'6 It was during this period of "parole" that Manco
finally succeeded in escaping from Cuzco to give the signal
for the rebellion. In the rather garbled version inherited by
Titu Cusi,17 Manco is represented as having been kidnapped
12 Sancho, op. cit., pp. 107-113; Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 277; Diego de
Castro Titu Cusi Yupanqui, 'Relacion de la Conquista del Peru y hechos del
Inca Manco II,y" Colecci6n de libros y documentos referentes a la historia del
Perui, II (1916), 25.
18 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 269-270; Father Bernab6e Cobo, Bistoria del
Nuevo kfundo (4 vols., Seville, 1890-1893), III, 203.
14 Antonio de Herrera, Historia general de los hechos de los castellanos, en
ocho d6cadas (4 vols., Madrid, 1726-1730), V, 169.
'Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 296-297; Garcilaso, op. cit., II, 92.
16Roberto Levillier, ed., Gobernantes del Peru', cartas y papeles, siglo XVI;
documentos del Archivo de Indias (14 vols., Madrid, 1921-1926), II, 329; Pedro
Pizarro, op. cit., I, 298-299.
17 Titu Cusi, I"Relacion . . . ," loc. cit., p. 46.

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repeatedly by the Pizarro brothers, for the purpose of extort-

ing -ransom. In any case, the account has interest, for it
reveals the survival of the calendrical feasts of the Incas in.
1535 at Cuzco. Thus the Indians celebrated the traditional
open-air banquets at which the Inca's presence was manda-
tory. The feast of Huarachicoy,'8 during which new names
were given and the ears of the young nobles were bored, was
held as usual. The eight-day feast of the Sun, and the harvest
festivals were likewise celebrated.'9
Titu 's monochrome account of the indignities to which
Manco was subjected is confirmed in Oviedo, who says that
while he was in prison, the Pizarrist captors urinated in his
face, snuffed their candles in his nostrils, and violated his
women in his presence.20 Manco knew that he was caught
between the two Spanish factions, and events such as these
probably account for his lifelong partiality towards Almagro,
and his overwhelming hatred for the Pizarrists.
Thus between 1533 and 1535, Manco's existence was torn
by contradictory allegiances. He assisted Almagro and De
Soto in the pursuit of the men of Quito under Quizquiz, but
he was also secretly engaged in recruiting Indian support for
the rebellion. In Cuzco he had been admitted to high rank in
Spanish society, with an encomienda and a Spanish servant,2'
but he still participated in the ritual of the pre-Conquest
calendar. He wore the llautu, but his person was unpre-
dictably subjected to abduction and the grossest of insults.
His nobles lacked respect in their behavior towards him and
refused to address him kneeling, with the usual ceremony.22
In his relations with the Spaniards, he was confused by the
growing quarrel between Pizarrists and Almagrists, seeking
refuge under Almagro's bed, according to Herrera, while the
Pizarrists sacked his house.23 If Atahualpa's life had been
broken by the shock of the Conquest, at least he remained
18 Ibid., p. 56; Herrera, op. cit., DeYc. V, 196; Molina (of Santiago), "Rela-
ei6n . . . Lima," Zoo. cit., p. 141.
11 Molina (of Santiago), "Relacion . . . Lima," loc. cit., pp. 160-162.
20 Gonzalo Fernandez de Oviedo y Vald6s, Historia general y natural de las
Indias (4 vols., Madrid, 1851-1855), IV, 244.
21 Titu Cusi, ''Relaci6n . . . ," loc. cit., p. 60.
22 Herrera, op. cit., WDe. V, 169. 28 Ibid.

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Indian to the core; with Manco, however, this period of his

life was ambivalent and equivocal, as was all Indian culture
within the Spanish sphere.
Elsewhere in Peru at this time, in 1535, there were no
signs of popular resistance to the Conquest at a high level of
spontaneous action. On the contrary, the only resistance was
offered by vestigial remnants of the Incaic armies,24 and by
local garrisons which had been assigned to certain areas be-
fore the Conquest for the maintenance of regional discipline.
There was no co6peration between these forces: each worked
independently in pursuit of its own advantage.
It became Manco 's mission to attempt to weld these resi-
dual elements of force into an effective army capable of
attacking the Europeans simultaneously in many areas. Spo-
radic signs of revolt had begun to appear here and there as
Manco assumed the task of organizing a serious rebellion.
At Jauja, for instance, where the Indians had been glad to
assist Pizarro in 1533, the people were restive,25 and in the
Collao, Manco was able to incite rebellion as a preliminary
distraction.26 Thus Manco had the benefit of an auspicious
moment, in which various Indian groups, previously passive
to the Conquest, were becoming familiar enough with Span-
ish economic methods to be hospitable to any proposal for
change through violence. And yet, Manco himself had helped
to destroy or disperse important concentrations of armed
Indians in the campaign against the men of Quito.27 In his
chosen strategy of mass envelopment, Manco needed the sup-
port of every body of men whose allegiance he could muster,
yet he had acquired the enmity, not only of the men of Quito,
but also of the immense class of yanaconas (the Incaic pro-
letariat of serfs alienated from their communities) dispersed
throughout southern Peru. In Cuzco itself, his efforts to drive
the Spaniards from Peru were vitally opposed by some thou-
sands of anti-Inca tribesmen resident there, such as the
24 Garcilaso, op. cit., II, Book II, Chap. ix.
25 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 289.
26 Bishop Valverde, "I Relaci6n del sitio del Cuzco, " Colecci6n de libros
espa4oles raros y muy curiosos, XIII (Madrid, 1879), p. 6.
27 Sancho, op. cit., pp. 113-126.

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yungas of the coast, the Canfaris of Ecuador, and the Chacha-

poyas Indians.28
The detailed conduct of the rebellion was planned jointly
by Manco and the high priest of the Inca state religion,
known as the Villac Umu, who had secretly returned to
Cuzco after deserting Almagro 's expedition to Chile.29 When
Manco escaped from Cuzco under the pretext of finding gold
for Hernando Pizarro, he convoked the leaders of all possible
Indian groups, and their followers met at Yucay.30 The
actual attack on Cuzco opened on April 18, 1536, and lasted
through August, 1537.31 The besieging force was composed
of Cuntisuyus drawn from the southwest, Andesuyus from
the east, and Collasuyus from the south.32 The inhabitants
of the northern provinces of Chinchasuyu were engaged both
at Cuzco and in the siege of Lima, as well as in holding off
the Spanish reinforcements sent up from the coast.
But if Manco gauged with admirable precision the propi-
tious moment for initiating the rebellion after Almagro 's
departure for Chile with the flower of the Spanish force,33
so did Francisco Pizarro countercheck Manco by making sure
that the Indian force was correspondingly weakened. It was
arranged that twelve thousand Indians, under Paullu and the
Villac Umu, should accompany Almagro.34 Manco, neverthe-
less, had planned other diversions to weaken the garrison of
Cuzco. Some days before the general outbreak of hostilities,
certain encomenderos were murdered by Indians in different
places at some distance from the capital. An Indian revolt
28 Titu Cusi, "IRelacion . . . ," loc. cit., p. 70; Cdneo-Vidal, op. cit., p. 106;
Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 304.
29 Valverde, "Relaci6n . . . Cuzco,'" loc. cit., p. 6; Gobernantes del P
(1921-1926), II, 389; Titu Cusi, "Relacion . . . ," boo. cit., p. 47; Herrera, op.
cit., Dee. V, 183-185; Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 299-300.
30Valverde, "Relacion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., p. 9.
31 Francisco Lopez de G6mara, Historia de las Indias (Madrid, 1749), p. 120;
Philip Ainsworth Means, in Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 186-187.
32 Montesinos, op. cit., I, 88; Garcilaso, op. cit., II, Book II, Chap. 23; Titu
Cusi, "Relaci6n . . . ," boc. cit., pp. 62-63.
33 Cobo, op. cit., IV, 204.
8' Oneo-Vidal, op. cit., p. 54. Cuineo-Vidal says that these Indians were cap-
tured by Manco Inca in his campaign against the men of Quito u-nder Quizquiz.
No authority is given.

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also flared up in the Collao, probably arranged by Villac

Umu, who had escaped from Almagro's party. As a result,
the three Pizarros were simultaneously drawn away from the
city on punitive expeditions, accompanied by substantial
bodies of men. These parties returned to Cuzco barely in
time to meet the shock of the siege.35 It may be that the tim-
ing of Manco's diversions went wrong; had they been co-
ordinated more closely with the initial attack upon Cuzco, the
city could not have resisted in the absence of its commanders.
On April 18, 1536, the Indian army converged upon the
four approaches of Cuzco, and set fire to the outlying build-
ings, working gradually towards the central plaza.36 As the
thatched roofs burned away, the Indians gained the double
advantage of smoking the soldiers fromi house after house,
driving them to the center, as in a hunting party where the
quarry is driven by bush-beaters to the center of a contract-
ing ring ;37 they also gained the advantage of circulating
through the city on the bare wall tops, high above the cavalry
charges launched in the streets below.38 The Spaniards coun-
tered this last advantage by tearing down the walls of the
houses each night when the attackers withdrew.'9 But beyond
the city's limits, the Indians had established elaborate sys-
tems of staked pits and barricades, such as the one obstruct-
ing the road to Lima, which Juan Pizarro found to be held by
a force of twenty thousand Chinchasuyus. On the seventh day
of the attack, the Spanish situation looked hopeless,40 but it
was relieved by Juan Pizarro 's bold sortie and flanking attack
upon Sacsahuaman, held by only fifteen hundred men under
the command of the Villac Umu. Sacsahuaman fell on May
29,41 and its surrender marked the beginning of the ebb of the
Indian revolt from the full and promising flood it had reached
during the previous weeks.
Elsewhere, however, Manco's thorough planning of the
36 Valverde, "Relaci6n . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., pp. 10-11.
86 Ibid., p. 12; Molina (of Santiago), "Relaci6n . . . Lima," loc. cit., p. 175.
87 See Cobo, op. cit., IV, 225-226, on ceremonial hunting, called chaco.
""Valverde, "IRelacion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., p. 20.
89 Ibid.
40Valverde, "IRelaci6n . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., p. 26.
41 Ibid., pp. 30-33.

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general rebellion yielded far more satisfactory results. Man-

co's forces succeeded in destroying several expeditions sent
by Francisco Pizarro from the coast to relieve CuzCo.42 At
the Cuesta de Parcos, 150 men under Diego Pizarro were
exterminated; at another battle, more than thirty men under
Algrovejo de Quin-ones were killed, and eighty horsemen com-
manded by Gonzalo de Tapia were destroyed in the province
of the Lucanas. Another force of thirty men under Captain
Gaete was surrounded at Jauja, and before they could be
relieved by the sixty men sent with Francisco de Godoy,
Gaete.'s party was slaughtered. Even the great expedition
commanded by Alonso de Alvarado, consisting of 550 sol-
diers, was unable to break beyond Jauja until mid-1537.43
The cumulative effect of these victories was such that the
Indians were able to disregard the setback at Cuzco, while
among the Spaniards at Lima, it was feared that Peru would
have to be abandoned.
The siege of Lima was co6rdinated with the general cam-
paign, to take place simultaneously with other attacks. It,
too, was conducted under orders from Manco, who had ar-
ranged that the Indians of the neighborhood of Lima itself,
reinforced by highland groups from Jauja, should congregate
at Pachacamac before advancing upon the City of the Kings.44
There the siege lasted twelve days.45 The Indians, wearing
fine textiles and golden ornaments, sought as in Cuzco to
storm the city by sheer mass, advancing repeatedy from their
base on the hill outside Lima, called Cerro San Cristobal.
Their object was to frighten the Spaniards back into their
ships in the harbor beyond. At one point these attacks were
so nearly successful that the Franciscan friars in the city
asked leave to depart, and Pizarro's Indian wife, Donfa Ine's,
the daughter of Huayna Capac, attempted to cross the lines
to join the besieging Indians.46 Had the campaign been suc-
cessful, it was the alleged plan of the Indians at the siege of
42Ibid., p. 34.
4S Gobernantes del Perib, II, 103-104; Montesinos, op. cit., I, 90; Valverde,
"Relaci6n . .. Ouzco," loc. cit., pp. 56-58.
44Valverde, "Relacion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., pp. 76-80; Montesinos, op. cit.,
I, 88.
46 Montesinos, op. cit., I, 91. 48 Ibid., I, 92.

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Lima to reconstitute the Inca state, and through the Spanish

women remaining in Peru, to create a new generation com-
bining the virtues of the two races.47
The significance of the rebellion of 1536-1537 lies in the
fact that it was the final Indian attempt to smother concen-
trated force with overwhelming mass. Manco conceived the
rebellion, it is true, as a total effort in southern Peru, but he
employed tactics analogous to those of game-beaters. If he
succeeded in taking the lives of some eight hundred Span-
iards during the sixteen months of the rebellion,48 Cuzco held
firm, occupied by only eighty horsemen among 190 Spaniards
supported by some hundreds of Indian warriors, who with-
stood the pressure of Manco's effectives, estimated at 180,000
men.49 Before the withdrawal to Ollantaytambo, Manco was
unable to understand how his vast army should have failed.50
His captains, instead of blaming the weaknesses of their
armament and strategy, blamed Manco for the hesitation he
had shown in pressing his advantage during the first critical
days of the siege.5"
Yet the siege of Cuzco remains a remarkable operation in
an extensive campaign, during which Indian strategy, tactics,
and material equipment were greatly improved. There was
unity of command, there were efficient communications with
other forces, and improved weapons were devised, such as
the weighted slings (ayllos), strung with llama tendons which
could not be severed, and designed to entangle the legs of the
horses. There were also staked pits, retarding fortifications,
and ambitious flanking movements. Manco had at his dis-
posal a certain number of horses and firearms captured from
the relieving parties sent out of Lima, as well as seven or
eight captive Europeans who served as grooms, armorers,
and powdermakers.52
These improvements, nevertheless, were far outbalanced
by the traditional weaknesses of Inca warfare. For example,
47Valverde, "IRelaci6n . . . Cuzco," loo. cit., p. 80.
48 Gobernantes del Perg, II, 105.
49Ibid., II, 391-393; Valverde, "IRelaci6n . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., p. 18.
60 Titu Cusi, "Relaci6n . . . ," loc. cit., p. 73.
61 Idem.
52 Gobernantes del Peru', II, 396; Herrera, op. cit., DWe. V, 191, 193.

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the campaign at Cuzco displays certain remnants of the ritual

behavior of ceremonial war.53 Manco's great mass attacks
were launched periodically at the full moon, when his men
were at the mercy of the cavalry counter-attacks. At all times
his troops were massed so densely that their pikes were of
no avail against the horses.54 Then, at new moon, when the
horses would have been at disadvantage in the dark night, the
Indians ceased attacking to perform sacrifices to the lunar
deity, thus forfeiting the advantage of sustained pressure
upon the enemy. This twenty-day rhythm of battle was
known to the Spaniards, and they exploited it accordingly.
It also became necessary for the Indians periodically to
disband large forces which were sent in search of food.55
Indian needs were vastly greater than those of the small
Spanish force, and after the fall of Sacsahuaman, it was an
easy matter for the Spaniards to gather enough corn at
nearby fields.56 The Indians, on the contrary, had to demobi-
lize huge numbers of men for agricultural labor, and this
cumulative drain upon their strength finally contributed to
the failure of the rebellion.
Manco commanded a popular army at Cuzco, levied from
all available sources. It cert-ainly lacked the professional
training of the pre-Conquest Inca armies, and in battle, its
behavior was that of a surging rabble, while in defeat, the
defection of large contingents was a daily phenomenon. The
Spaniards systematically exploited all the weaknesses of such
an agrarian militia. They harvested or burned the crops
sown with great difficulty by the Indian armies. Prisoners
of battle were mutilated, usually by cutting off their right
hands.57 In the fourth month of the siege, the Spaniards
adopted a devastating practice. The besiegers composed a
mass of humanity in which only a fraction was tactically
effective. The great remainder consisted of women and chil-
dren and families of the fighting men. The food and care of
63 L6pez de G6mara, op. cit., p. 120; Valverde, "Relaci6n . . . Cuzco," loc.
cit., pp. 79, 36-37.
"4 Garcilaso, op. cit., I, Book I, Chap. 24.
65 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 323-325.
5"Valverde, "Relaci6n . . . Cuzco," lOc. cit., pp. 34, 43.
1' Ibid., p. 44.

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the attackers were provided by these camp-followers, and

Hernando Pizarro ordered that all women caught in battle be
killed.58 The progressive demoralization caused by this prac-
tice contributed largely to Manco's withdrawal from Cuzco
in February, 1537, in the tenth month of the siege.
Finally, a major cause for the failure of the rebellion was
Manco's lack of control over the proletariat of the yanaconas
distributed throughout Peru. These servants functioned as
spies, domestics, providers, and nurses for the Spaniards.
Above all, they could mingle freely among the rebels to learn
their plans of attack.59 Against such large-scale espionage,
Manco had no protection.
In Manco's defense, it should be pointed out that he had
no choice but to attack in mass. He had had some experi-
ence with Spanish weapons and tactics during the campaign
against Quizquiz, in 1535, where he served as an Indian
auxiliary. When planning his own campaign against the
Spaniards, however, Manco faced the dilemma of choosing
either to use untrained masses of men, or to approximate
European tactics without the proper equipment. That he
decided upon the mass attack was reasonable and fitting.


After the failure of the grand effort to smother the nerve

centers of the Spanish occupation of Peru, Manco changed
his strategy.60 Instead of continuing the hopeless effort to
muster further masses of humanity, Manco adopted a policy
of withdrawal and dispersal to inaccessible bases, where he
converted topography into a factor working to his advantage.
At Ollantaytambo, in the tenth month of the rebellion, he
undertook to fortify the site, and to develop the use of Span-
ish weapons and tactics.6' When Hernando Pizarro came
from Cuzco to attack with a force of sixty cavalry and thirty
infantry, he found the Indians entrenched upon the terraces
of the narrow valley, and so disposed in the town and on the
58 Ibid., p. 52. 69 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., I, 330.
'OAccording to Garcilaso, op. cit., II, Book II, Chap. 29, the siege had cost
the Indians 40,000 men.
61 Gobernantes del Per*, II, 396-7.

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river bank, that they could maintain an elastic defense from

which the Spaniards had great difficulty in -extricating them-
selves."2 The river was even turned out of its bed by the
Indians, to swamp the narrow valley-bottom on which the
Europeans had taken their stand, and make it impossible
for the horses to maneuver.63 Later on, Manco sent a party
from Ollantaytambo against Cuzco, which at the moment was
held by a skeleton force under Gabriel de Rojas.64 In this
attack, Cuzco nearly fell to the Indians, who were using
horses, armor, and firearms in relayed attacks, designed to
spare men and animals. Manco himself was mounted during
one engagement in this latter phase of the renewed siege.
Early in March, 1537, Manco received letters from Alma-
gro, who was in the neighborhood of Arequipa, announcing
Almagro's impending return-to Cuzco with the expedition to
Chile.65 The news created a problem to which Manco found
the solution most difficult. He had long known of the dispute
between Almagro and Pizarro over the right to the possession
of Cuzco, but he could not be certain of the lengths to which
Almagro might go to antagonize Pizarro. It was also unclear
to what depth the rift between Pizarrists and Almagrists
might be exploited, and Manco, like anyone else in the coun-
try was uncertain as to who was really Governor of Peru.66
At the same time, it was imperative for Manco to prevent, by
whatever means, the disaster of an amicable reunion between
the forces under Almagro and the besieged garrison of Cuzco.
Thus Manco was compelled to make friendly overtures to
Almagro, in a letter which Oviedo reports as containing the
phrase, "Almagro, tui eres mi padre."67 His real object was
to create further dissension and misunderstanding between
the factions, in the hope that they would destroy each other.
Almagro 's intention, in the meanwhile, was to secure
82Valverde, "Relaci6n . . . Cuzeo," loc. cit., pp. 46-48.
Ibid., p. 49.
84 Herrera, op. cit., Dee. V, pp. 193-195.
66 Herrera, op. cit., Dec. VI, p. 19; Oviedo, Historia general y natural de las
Indias (1851-1855), IV, 284-286.
Oviedo, Historia general y natural de las Indias, IV, 288.
e7 Oviedo, Historia general y natural de las Indias, IV, 288. See Gobernantes
del Pergi, II, 397.

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Cuzco for himself.68 This he planned to do by either of two

programs: (a) to destroy Manco 's army, bringing the Inca
to peace, and then to claim Cuzco as a reward for smashing
the rebellion which the Pizarros had been unable to handle;
or (b) by ignoring Manco and attacking the Pizarrists in
Cuzco, knowing that a stalemate existed in the siege, and that
he could turn the situation by independent action provided
it were initiated before the Pizarrist reinforcements could be
brought up to Cuzco from Jauja under Alonso de Alvarado.
Tlherefore, Almagro's first move upon nearing the Valley of
Cuzco was to open discussions with Manco, in order to learn
Manco's strength and plans. Camping at Urcos, he sent mes-
sengers to Yucay, as previously arranged with the Inca.
When Manco learned the formidable strength of Almagro's
party, however, he sought to prove the loyalty of the men of
Chile to the Crown by invoking their greed. He asked the
messenger what sum of gold would buy the King of Spain's
consent to the withdrawal of all his men from Peru.69 Upon
learning that the proposal would not even be entertained, in
terms revealing the loyalty of the Almagrists, Manco angrily
declared his intransigeance, and made plans to attack Alma-
gro.70 But he continued the attempt to alienate Almagro and
the Pizarros by a curious and naive stratagem.71 It so hap-
pened that Hernando Pizarro, learning of Almagro's nego-
tiations with the Inca, likewise sent his envoys to Manco, in
order to secure his support if necessary against the insurgent
Almagro. Thus Manco received emissaries of both factions at
the same moment. Then, pretending to test the sincerity of
the Almagrists's offers, he asked that Almagro's envoy cut
off the hand of the messenger from Cuzco.72 Shortly there-
after, Manco subjected Ruy DDiaz, the Almagrist envoy, to
tortures perhaps designed to entice Almagro into a punitive
sally towards Ollantaytambo, where Manco thought he might
be able to overcome some part of the men of Chile.73 Mean-
68 Herrera., op. cit., Dec. VI, p. 22.
e9 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., II, 347. 70 Herrera, op. cit., Dec. VI, p. 23.
71 Valverde, " Relacion . . . Cuzco, " Ilo. cit., p. 95; Gobernantes del Periu
II, 398.
UMolina (of Santiago), "Relaci6n . . . Lima," Zoe. cit. p. 178.
7S Captain Pedro de Cieza de Le6n, "The war of Las Salinas," Cieza's Chron-

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while, Manco discovered that amiable negotiations were under

way between Almagro and the Pizarros, with the consequence
that, fearing Almagro 's power, Manco sought now to befriend
the hard-pressed defenders of Cuzco.74
All Manco's maneuvers were in vain, for by mid-July,
1537, Almagro was in full control of the highland situation.75
He had occupied Cuzco by trickery, and had defeated Alonso
de Alvarado's Pizarrist relief force at the Apurimac bridge:
in one brilliant sweep he became the master of Peru, threat-
ening Pizarro in Lima itself and forcing Manco, whose posi-
tion even at Ollantaytambo now was untenable, to withdraw
deep into the inaccessible province of Vilcabamba. This last
maneuver was necessary because Almagro wished to march
against Francisco Pizarro in Lima, but as the Indian threat
in the Valley of Cuzco remained serious, he had first to in-
capacitate the Inca.76 A requeriniento was sent to Ollantay-
tambo, urging the Inca to come to peace to Cuzco ;77 when he
refused, a punitive expedition was sent to cripple him.78
Manco met the Spaniards, under Rodrigo Orgofnez, consisting
of several hundred soldiers, at the battle of Amaybamba, in
Vilcabamba province. In this encounter, Manco still had
mules and horses at his disposal, and he had selected a favor-
ing topography.79 Orgonez' attack, combined with the many
desertions from Manco's army, led to a defeat for the Inca.
After the battle, great numbers of his men returned discour-
aged to their homes and fields,80 so that the Inca had no choice
but to withdraw. His flight, accompanied by a score of
Lucana litter-bearers, was pursued by a tenacious party
which abandoned the chase near Viticos only because of the
impassable nature of the roads.8' Thus Manco 's threat to

icle (Part IV, Book II, London, 1923), Chap. V; Gobernantes del Peril, II, 398-
399; Valverde, "Relacion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., p. 100.
74 Valverde, "Relacion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., p. 115.
75 Herrera, op. cit., D6e. VI, 36; Enrique.z de Guzman, op. cit., p. 115.
76 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., II, 362-365.
77 Valverde, "Relaeion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., pp. 114-115.
78 Herrera, op. cit., Dec. VI, pp. 42-43; Valverde, "IRelacion . . . Cuzco,"
loc. cit., pp. 131-132.
79 Cieza, "The War of Las Salinas,'.' loc. cit., 86 et seq. 80 Ibid., p. 35.
81 Valverde, "Relaci6n . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., pp. 133-134; Oviedo, Historia
general y natural de las Indias, IV, 294.

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the Valley of Cuzco was substantially broken by August or

September of 1537.
.At Viticos, overlooking the Vilcabamba River, Manco soon
established a political and religious center about which to col
lect his family, reconstruct his forces, and establish a sepa-
ratist Inca state which was to endure until 1572.82 After the
flight of 1537, he was able to bring his two small sons, Sayri
Tupac (born 1534 or 1535) and Titu Cusi (born 1533), his
women, immense herds of llamas, and a substantial following
of loyal Quechuas to.the remote mountain capital.83 He also
caused to be brought to Viticos the mummies of his ancestors
and a golden image of the sun, called Punchao.84 Appropri-
ate edifices were erected or adapted to house these various
elements of the new concept of Inca separatism,85 and Manco
fell into a routine of life of which the dominant tone was
Indian, permeated, however, with many European customs
and habits. At-Viticos, horses were kept, and firearms, as
well as stores of European food and clothing.
All roads and passes into the area were blocked, the
bridges were disrupted, and the passes themselves were gar-
risoned with small parties so disposed as to beat back any
Spanish attempts to force an entry into the province.86 Yet
Manco retained relations with the outside world, particularly
with the seditious and defeated Almagrists after 1538. Often
he ventured down to the roads used by the Spaniards, for
the purpose of harassing their communications and plunder-
ing their supply trains. It is reported that coca, tobacco, and
cocoa, as well as other products of Vilcabamba were clandes-
tinely purchased from the rebel Indians by the European
colonists.87 Thus the separatist state, which existed in nega-
82 Hiram Bingham, "Vitcos, the Last Capital," Papers of the Peruvian Ex-
peditions of Yale University and the National Geographic Society, Proceedings
of the American Antiquarian Society (1912), I, No. 5, pp. 1-64; Inca Land
(Cambridge, 1922).
83 Tristan Sanchez, "Virey D. Francisco de Toledo," Coleccion de documentos
in6ditos . . . del Archivo de Indias, VIII (Madrid, 1867), 263 et seq.
84 Titu Cusi, "IRelacion . . . ,'' loc. cit., p. 82.
85 Bingham, "Vitcos, " loc. cit. (1912).
88 Father Antonio de la Calancha, Coronica Moralizada del Orden d
,4ugustin en el Perg . . . (Barcelona, 1638), p. 787.
87 C'uneo-Vidal, op. cit., p. 134.

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tion of European claims to the possession of Peru, gradually

underwent an internal transformation, evolving slowly to-
wards the acceptance and passive admission of Spanish colon-
ial culture. It was a slow evolution during Manco's lifetime,
for he nourished a bitter personal hatred towards Francisco
Pizarro. In 1539, for example, he refused to communicate
with Bishop Valverde of Cuzco, for the reason that he had
once seen the friar doff his hat to the Governor.88
For Manco, the strategic problems in Vilcabamba were
multiple and complex. He had first to consolidate his posi-
tion among possible Indian allies, such as the Chachapoyas
Indians,89 as well as to terrify those pacific Quechua I
who had already submitted to colonization.90 Such was the
case among the Huancas of Jauja Valley, who had given too
ready a welcome to the Spaniards in 1533, in anticipation of
their release from Inca servitude."' Manco raided''their settle-
ments repeatedly, and destroyed their sacred image of the
Huari Villca.92 On the other hand, he was obliged to continue
harassing Spanish centers of population, such as Limatambo
and Andahuaylas, in order to delay and prevent the coloniza-
tion of nearby Indian groups which.might prove useful to
him as allies.93 Perhaps he also fomented new revolts in
other parts of Peru,. such as the Charca.s rebellion of 1537-
1538. There, a chief called Catari Apassa, who passed as the
Son of the Sun, led a large array of Collaguas and Lupacas
into a disastrous battle at the Rio Desaguadero, against the
superior forces of Hernando and Gonzalo Pizarro.94 The
88Valverde, "Relaeion . . . Cuzco," IOc. cit., p. 120.
89 Titu Cusi, "IRelacion . .. .I," loc. cit., p. 83.
90 Montesinos, op. cit., I, 114.
91 Titu Cusi, "Relaeion . . . , loc. cit., pp. 86-87.
92 Cieza, "The War at Las Salinas," loc. cit., p. 232.
93 Father Crist6bal de Molina (of Guzco), "IRelacion . . . Lima," Colecoi6n
de libros y documentos ref erentes a la historia del Peru, I (1916), 10; Cobo, op.
cit., III, 206; Father Pablo Jose de Arriaga, "Extirpacion de la idolatria en el
Pert," Coleccion de libros y documentos ref erentes d la historia del Peru (Sec-
ond Series, Vol. I, Lima, 1920), pp. 84-85.
94Valverde, "Relacion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., pp. 177-187; Titu (lusi, "Rela-
cion . . . ," loc. cit., pp. 160-166; Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., II, 386-389; Herrera,
op. cit., Dee. VI, 138; Cieza, "The War of Las Salinas," loc. cit., p. 229 and
Chap. 89.

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Spaniards were assisted by Indian contingents under Paullu,

whom Almagro had created Inca after the occupation of
Cuzco.95 At the battle of Cotabamba, in the same campaign,
the Spaniards defeated another Indian force under Tiso, who
was Manco's appointed captain.96 Other local revolts were
also in progress during 1538, as in the provinces of Huanuco
and Chachapoyas, under the leadership of Huillac Tupac,97 a
relative of Manco's. In Cuzco province itself revolt was stir-
ring under the leadership of the Villac Umu.98
Manco 's own activity, however, was limited to savage
raids on a small scale. In one of these, probably at Panticalla
Pass, the Indians, encamped upon an eminence, and disposing
of several horses, routed and killed a Spanish party of thirty
men in a vicious surprise attack, in which Manco charged,
bearing a light horseman's lance.99 The Spaniards were led
by a young captain fresh from Europe, whose inexperience
caused him to advance carelessly into Manco's carefully laid
trap. Manco, however, had but eighty men with him in this
brilliant engagement, and when Francisco Pizarro sent out a
retaliatory expedition, Manco was unable to deal with it, a-nd
withdrew to Viticos, where he could not be reached by cavalry.
Pedro Pizarro relates that the Indians were at this time in
possession of a few arquebuses, which, however, were mis-
used through poor priming and leaving the ball too close to
the muzzle of the gun.100 Manco seems, nevertheless, to have
become an accomplished horseman. Shortly after these events,
Francisco Pizarro founded the town of Huamanga, between
Jauja and Vilcas, specifically to protect communications be-
tween Cuzco and Lima.10'
95 Cobo, op. cit., III, 209; Garcilaso, op. cit., Part II, Book II, Chap. 29.
9 Valverde, '" Relacion . . . Cuzco," loc. cit., pp. 187-193.
97 Herrera, op. cit., Dec. VI, 101, 128, 134, 178; Cieza, "The War of Las
Salinas," Oc. cit., Chaps. 79, 84, 92; M. Jimenez de la Espada, ed., Relaciones
Geogrdflcas de Indias, Peru (4 vols., Madrid, 1881-1897), IV, xiii-xix.
98 Gieza, "The War of Las Salinas," loc. cit., Chap. 63.
99 Bingham, Inca Land (Cambridge, 1922), p. 176; Cobo, op. cit., III, 205;
Cieza, " The War of Las Salinas," loc. cit., Chaps. 87, 88; Oviedo, Historia
general y natural de las Indias, IV, 343; Valverde, "Relacion . . . uzco," loc.
cit., p. 189 et seq.; Herrera, op. cit., Dec. VI, 137.
100 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., II, 396 ff.
101 Cieza, "The War of Las Salinas," loc. cit., Chap. 91.

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There are indications at this time (1538-1539) of fruitless

Spanish efforts to negotiate a peace with Manco. During
their course, an incident occurred which embittered Manco
more deeply than ever against Francisco Pizarro. Late in
December, 1538, the Spaniard received messages from Manco
offering to discuss peace terms.'02 Cieza indicates that Gon-
zalo Pizarro had so far surrounded Manco near Vilcabamba
that Manco invited peace merely in order to play for time with
which to escape Gonzalo's net.'03 Francisco Pizarro, how-
ever, sent an envoy to Manco with the gift of a gelding and
a mulatto groom, but the Inca caused the messenger to be
killed, in retaliation for the depredations committed just then
by Gonzalo Pizarro, who had burned the town of Vilcabamba
and captured one of Manco's favorite wives.'04 The Marquis
Francisco Pizarro, then at Yucay, answered Manco by put-
ting the wife to death after torture.'05
Manco's raids then increased in severity. Taking advan-
tage of the armed dissensions between the Spaniards, he su(-
ceeded in destroying crops to such an extent in 1540-1541,
that a general famine resulted in southern Peru, during the
course of which some thirty thousand Indians died of hun-
ger.106 The municipal council of Cuzco was obliged to declare
war upon Manco in December, 1540, but the raids continued
unabated, particularly in the neighborhood of Huamanga.107
The question of Manco's continuing rebellion even came to
the attention of the King in 1540, when a royal request was
addressed to the Inca, urging him to come to terms with the
newly appointed Governor Vaca de Castro.'08 The intention
of the Crown at that moment was to secure Manco's person,
and then bring him to Spain, where he might end his life in
peaceful and harmless luxury.
Actually, until Manco 's death in 1545, none of the southern
highland settlements occupied by Spaniards was ever free
from the serious danger of these raids. One, late in 1544,
102Montesinos, op. cit., I, 106-107; Herrera, op. cit., Dee. VI, 144-145.
:10 Captain Pedro de Cieza de Leon, 'The War of Chupas," Cieza's Chronicle
(Part IV, Book II, London, 1918), Chap. 1.
104 Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., II, 396 if.
105 Ibid., II, 404. 100 Montesinos, op. cit., I, 114.
107 Ibid., I, 122. 108 Herrera, op. cit., Dee. VI, 187.

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wrought havoc within a few miles of Cuzco itself.109 The

raids hindered the economic exploitation of the area, and
they added to the conflict between Pizarrists and Almagrists.
Because of them, the work of highland colonization came vir-
tually to a standstill between 1538 and 1545. Manco's guer-
rilla rebellion never extended, however, to the coast, where
the yunga tribes remained at peace all during this period."0
At his retreat in Vilcabamba, Manco's constant hope had
been that the dissensions between Almagro and Pizarro might
become a civil war in which both parties would be destroyed,
leaving Manco master of the field. The course of events was
such that his hope was constantly kept alive. At the Battle
of Salinas, on April 26, 1538, the Pizarros defeated Alma-
gro's forces; on July 8, Almagro himself was put to death
by Pizarro in Cuzco. The conflict was far from settled at
this point. On June 26, 1541, Francisco Pizarro was assassi-
nated in Lima by Almagrist partisans, and the old conflict
burned on. Almagro's mestizo son, known as Almagro the
Lad, now carried on the fight, which assumed the character
of a rebel-legitimist struggle, with the Pizarros and the inter-
ests of the Crown represented by the new Governor, Vaca de
Castro. At the Battle of Chupas in September, 1542, the
Almagrists were decisively beaten and dispersed.
Manco followed the events closely from Viticos,"' and he
aided Almagro the Lad in various ways. He was motivated
by hatred for the remnants of Pizarro's party, as well as by
the desire to keep the civil war in issue. After the rout at
Chupas, the young Almagro, accompanied by Diego Mendez,
one of Pizarro's assassins,"2 and several other Spaniards,
attempted to escape to Viticos, where Manco had assured
them refuge."3 Almagro, however, was captured and put to
death in Cuzco by Vaca de Castro's men.1"4 Had he been able
109 Captain Pedro de Cieza de Leon, The War of Quito (London, 1913), 166.
10 Valverde, IIRelacion . . Cuzco," loc. cit., p. 121.
H'lerrera, op. cit., Dec. VI, 224; VII, 53.
112 H. H. Urteaga, ed., " Asesinato de D. Franeisco Pizarro, Gobernador del
Per', " Revista del Archivo Nacional del Pertx, VII (Lima, 1929), 29; Mon-
tesinos, op. cit., I, 120.
:11 Cieza, "The War of Chupas," loc. cit., p. 240.
114 Ibid., p. 292.

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to join Manco, the assistance given by this brilliant and cou-

rageous soldier to the Indian cause might have effected great
changes in Manco 's conduct of the rebellion."-5 Actually,
only Diego Mendez and a few others succeeded in making
their way to Manco's court, where Manco gave them lavish
Indian hospitality for three years, although they were not
permitted to bear arms."6
Diego Mendez had been a fairly important figure in the
Almagrist party."17 He was the holder of a large encomienda
at Asangaro, which he forfeited through his part in the assas-
sination of Francisco Pizarro. He was also the brother of
Rodrigo Orgoinez, who had so often met Manco in battle.
After three years at Viticos, the monotony of Indian life had
begun to weigh heavily upon him. He was anxious to recover
his status and properties. In 1545, it is said that a friend in
Lima made inquiries on his behalf and wrote Mendez that
the viceregal government would pardon his seditious be-
havior and restore his position if he would end Manco Capac's
life.118 At that time, Manco happened to be surrounded by a
small bodyguard, because the bulk of his forces was away
upon a punitive expedition in Catamarca.119 The captive
Spaniards profited from the occasion by inviting Manco to
play at bowls with them: a dispute arose over the game, and
while Manco was measuring the distance, he was stabbed in
the back.120 The Europeans then attempted to escape on
Manco's own horses, but were cut off by the force returning
from Catamarca and beaten to death.
Manco lived several days longer, and left the question of
his succession contingent upon the sex of an unborn child.'2'
115 Ibid., p. 299.
Cobo, op. cit., III, 206; Lo6pez de Gomara, op. cit., p. 141; Sknchez, op.
cit., p. 264; Pedro Pizarro, op. cit., II, 437.
117 Montesinos, op. cit., I, 163-164; Herrera, op. cit., VII, 167.
118 Contrast Cieza, The War of Quito (London, 1913), p. 168, who suggests
that Maneo was eager to seeure an amnesty from Viceroy Nunfiez Vela.
119 Cobo, op. cit., III, 207.
120 Titu Cusi Relain . . , loc. ct., p. 165.
121 The exaet date of Manco 's death is nowhere given. In 1545, however, the
fear existed, among the Spaniards that Maneo and Diego AleVndez together might
besiege Cuzco, which had been declared loyal to the Crown. Thus Manco 's death
was still unknown, or he was alive early in 1545. See Goberncantes del Peru, II,

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If that child were female, his son Sayri Tupac (born 1534 or
1535) was to become Inca, under a regency.122 Manco's body
later was preserved at Vilcabamba in a Temple of the Sun,
where it was discovered in 1572.


The time Manco spent in close contact with Spaniards and

Spanish life was very brief indeed. It can be reduced to the
intermittent residence in Cuzco during 1534 and 1535, and to
the short periods when Spaniards lived with him in his camp.
These were prisoners, such as Ruy Diaz in 1536-1537 at
Ollantaytambo, and the party of refugees at Viticos from
1542 to 1545. In general, then, Manco had actually seen little
of European culture, although the fight to drive it from Peru
occupied all his adult life. He owed his position as Sapa
Inca to Francisco Pizarro, whom he hated more than any hu-
man being. His concepts of strategy and tactics were in con-
stant flux under the necessity of adapting them to Spanish
methods of warfare. He became a competent horseman and
learned the use of firearms; he was also fond of European
diversions, such as chess, bowls, and quoits, although reading
and writing probably remained beyond his command. A
curious story is preserved in this connection. At one point
during the siege of Cuzco, Manco's men intercepted a party
from Lima bearing sacks of mail for the defenders of the
city. The messengers were decapitated, and the mail bags
were brought to the Inca. As he was about to have the letters
destroyed, one of the Spaniards, who had been captive in
camp for some months, suggested to Manco that it might
terrify the occupants of Cuzco to place the severed Spanish
heads in the bags and send them on to their destination.
Manco accepted the suggestion, and the mail was forwarded,
undisturbed but for the grisly additions.123 Thus, if Manco
understood certain physical weapons used by the Spaniards,,
he had not comprehended the intellectual weapon of writing.
There is no evidence that Manco ever accepted Christian-
122 Cobo, op. cit., III, 209.
123 Montesinos, op. cit., I, 90; Oviedo, Historia general y natural de las Indias,
iV, 229.

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ity, even in name. He never received baptism; he persisted in

polygamy and suni-worship from beginning to end. It is not
unlikely that the essential nucleus of Indian pre-Conquest be-
liefs and ritual customs was more strictly observed at Man-
co's court in Ollantaytambo, and later in Viticos,124 than
anywhere else in Peru during the sixteenth century. But
Manco could not remain, like Atahualpa, a totally Indian
sovereign. His existence, for all its conscious historical voli-
tion, amounted to a negation of colonial culture, and by the
same token, it was far more deeply affected by the emergent
colonial pattern than had he passively accepted the loss of
cultural identity that so rapidly affected the members of
coastal tribes. Thus his life, and that of his responsible fol-
lowers, presents a contrasting rhythm of efforts to acculturate
where survival was at stake, and of efforts to re-define cul-
tural autonomy in the separatist state.
Several stages may now be distinguished in the process.
Manco's career under the Conquest began as that of a col-
laborationist, protected by the Spaniards in an alliance with
the invader against the members of his own society. But in
1535, the social causes for rebellion agreed with the sense of
deep personal injury Manco had suffered. He had seen no
indication that the Spaniards intended to leave the pattern
of Incaic culture intact. Where he had anticipated restitu-
tion of political control, perhaps in return for payment of
regular tribute, the economic resources of Peru were being
distributed among the conquerors, and the Indian cults were
being militantly displaced by Christian ritual. His own posi-
tion, and that of his Indian associates, under Spanish control,
would have become that of pensioned gentlemen-in-waiting to
the Governor. Uncompromising, lifelong revolt was Manco's
vital response to the situation. It began with the general
rebellion, animated by the hope of exterminating all Spanish
force by smothering it in masses of Indian attackers. When
this attempt failed, Manco was forced into a pattern of nego-
tiation with one faction of the enemy. Almagro 's force, how-
ever, was at the moment invincible in Peru, and it compelled

124 Bingham, "IVitcos,II loc. cit. (1912).

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Manco, in 1538, to withdraw from the sphere of effective

action into limited warfare of a guerrilla commander. The
later history of the neo-Incas at Viticos is perhaps but one
aspect of a general colonial Peruvian phenomenon of resist-
ance through dispersal, but in Manco's case, the retreat to
the mountains was different from that of a few oppressed
Indian villagers; his dispersal was governed by a residue of
statecraft manifested in his repeated efforts to expand the
area of resistance, and in his attempts to create further divi-
sion among the Europeans.
Yale University.

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