Bolivar the Liberator

By Michel Vaucaire; Margaret Reed | Go to book overview
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XXXVI

THE Inca race had not entirely forgotten the atrocities and the perfidy of Pizarro when he conquered Peru at the beginning of the sixteenth century. Cuzco, a very ancient town, was founded, says tradition, by the hero Manco Ccapac, come from the hot countries with a great rod of gold in his hand, the symbol of his power. Manco Ccapac halted one day with his sister Mama Occlo on a mountain from which they could see a circular plain surrounded by hills. They decided to settle there and gave it the name of Cuzco, which means 'navel of the world.' Now tradition had it, even in 1822, that an underground lake existed beneath the cathedral and that the water of this lake began to boil every year on the anniversary of Pizarro's arrival. No threat was sufficient to prevent the Incas from making obeisance as they passed the place.

The most serious insurrection against the Spanish authority was that of the cacique Tupac Amaru at the end of the eighteenth century.

At this time the governors of certain districts had the exclusive right of supplying the natives with the most necessary goods. This privilege led very rapidly to abuses; the prices demanded by the Spaniards were so excessive that the inhabitants of the country lived in most terrible destitution. A cacique called José Gabriel Condorcanque took the name of Tupac

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