Spanish conquest of Peru

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Francisco Pizarro
Under Pachacútec the enormous expansion of the Inca Empire began in 1438 (dark red: area before 1438)

The Spanish conquest of Peru by Francisco Pizarro from 1532 to 1536 ended the rule of the Inca Empire over large parts of western South America and, together with the conquest of Mexico, finally made Spain a world power of the early modern period .


The Inca Empire

The Inca empire, called Tahuantinsuyu , extended over the coastal and Andean regions of today's states of Peru , Ecuador and Bolivia as well as smaller parts of Colombia , Chile and Argentina at the beginning of the 16th century . Thanks to its road network, it had an excellent infrastructure and was tightly organized. However, the empire was internally not consolidated: only a few decades earlier, large areas had been annexed to the empire and the tribes and peoples residing there were subjected.

Civil war in the Inca Empire

All power was in the hands of the ruler, called Sapa Inka . The entire empire was focused on its capital, Cusco , but Huayna Cápac , who had ruled as Sapa Inca since 1493, preferred Quito, which had only been conquered under his predecessor, as his main residence . At the turn of the year 1527/28 things changed, however, because an epidemic hit the Inca Empire. Huayna Cápac succumbed to the disease in May 1528, as did his son and designated successor Ninan Cuyochi . The nobility of the capital Cusco designated Huayna Cápac's son Huáscar as the new Sapa Inca. His half-brother Atahualpa , who resided in Quito and could rely on Huayna Cápac's generals Quizquiz , Rumiñahui and Chalcuchímac , refused to obey him. The result was a three-year, bitter civil war in which the subjugated peoples were drawn.

Spanish expansion in America

In the twenty years after the discovery of America in 1492 by Christopher Columbus had Kingdom of Spain took the large islands of the Caribbean possession and began its expansion on the mainland. The most important acquisition was the conquest of Mexico (1519 to 1521) with its rich silver mines. At the same time, the exploration of northwestern South America began. Vasco Núñez de Balboa crossed the Isthmus of Panama in 1513 and was the first European to discover the South Sea (Pacific), which was initially of particular importance as a possible gateway to India. In 1519 the city of Panama was founded on the Pacific .

Spanish explorations

The gold country in the south

In Panama, the Spaniards heard the first rumors about a gold-rich country "Birú" in the south. A first expedition led by Pascual de Andagoya reached the Río San Juan in Colombia in 1522 , but then had to end the trip because Andagoya became seriously ill. His two small ships were bought in 1524 by three citizens of the city of Panama: Francisco Pizarro, Diego de Almagro and the priest Hernando de Luque .

Francisco Pizarro came from Extremadura and came to America in 1502. He had taken part in expeditions to the Caribbean coast of South America and also in Balboa's crossing of the Isthmus of Panama. The three men teamed up to find the land of Birú. Pizarro was to lead the expedition, Almagro was to take over the logistics and de Luque the financing.

Pizarro's first trip

In November 1524 Pizarro set out with about 100 men and four horses in two small brigantines . The journey took them in 1525 along the Colombian Pacific coast to the Río San Juan. But no riches were found, only hunger, disease and hostile Indians. Many Spaniards were killed, Pizarro was injured several times in battle and Almagro, who had followed with reinforcements, lost an eye.

Despite this failure, the three partners were determined to continue the venture and were able to persuade the governor of Golden Castile (Panama), Pedro Arias Dávila , to allow a second voyage. The partnership between Pizarro, Almagro and de Luque has now also been contractually agreed.

Pizarro's second trip

The second expedition began in March 1526. The sea captain Bartolomé Ruiz and the Greek artilleryman Pedro de Candía were also involved . The journey initially went like the first. Over a hundred Spaniards died from hunger, disease or caimans . After the expedition had lasted over a year, it was decided in May 1527 that Pizarro should wait with a large number of the men on the Hahninsel in Tumaco Bay , while Almagro should get supplies in Panama. However, Governor Dávila did not want his colony to be bloodleaded again. He forbade Almagro to recruit more men and sent Captain Juan Tafur to Rooster Island with orders to bring all men back.

The Thirteen from Rooster Island

When Tafur arrived on Hahneninsel in August, he was happily welcomed as a savior. Pizarro, however, refused to go back in defeat and convinced twelve other men to follow his example. These later became known as the "Thirteen from Rooster Island" (trece de la fama) .

The thirteen held out for another five months - first on Hahneninsel and then on the island of Gorgona, which is further in the sea and thus more protected . Finally, Bartolomé Ruiz appeared with reinforcements: the governor had allowed the expedition to continue for six months. Three Spaniards who were too sick to travel stayed on the island.

First contacts with the Inca Empire

The further journey south was finally more successful. In April 1528 the Spaniards reached Tumbes in the north of what is now Peru, which had been incorporated into the Inca Empire a few years earlier. After years of searching, they discovered the high culture of the Incas. They were welcomed in a friendly manner and gifts were exchanged. The governor there sent messengers to Huayna Cápac to inform him of the meeting with the guests. But when the messengers arrived at the Sapa Inka camp, the latter was already sick.

Meanwhile the Spaniards drove further south to the Río Santa and then started their return journey. Three Spaniards decided to stay in Tumbes. The three men they had left behind were taken away to Gorgon Island and returned to Panama with evidence of the Tumbes culture - ceramics, clothing, metal vessels - and two Indians, Felipillo and Martinillo , who were to be trained as interpreters.

Pizarro travels to Spain

Since Pedro de los Ríos , the new governor in Panama, opposed the company, the three partners decided that Pizarro should travel to Spain and contact King Charles directly . Pizarro set out in September 1528 and arrived in Seville six months later. In Toledo he met Hernán Cortés , with whom he was distantly related. A few years earlier, Cortés had conquered the Aztec Empire in Mexico by usurping the person of the ruler and gaining the support of tribes subject to the Aztecs.

After long negotiations with the Council of India , Pizarro concluded a treaty with the crown, the Capitulación of Toledo , which was signed by Queen Isabella on July 26, 1529 in the absence of the king . In this, Pizarro was authorized to explore and conquer the province of Peru, now called New Castile . He was appointed captain general of the province, while his partner Almagro was only appointed governor of the city of Tumbes. The Thirteen from Rooster Island were made Hidalgos . Pizarro was obliged to recruit at least 150 men in Spain and leave for America within six months.

Francisco Pizarro now traveled to his hometown Trujillo in Extremadura , where he convinced his half-brothers Hernando , Juan and Gonzalo and other men to come along. In January 1530 he left for America. He had not succeeded in recruiting as many men as the contract required, but he told the officials in Seville that the others had already gone ahead.

The conquest

Stations of Conquest (with today's boundaries)

Pizarro's third trip


After months of preparations in Panama, Pizarro set out for Peru on January 20, 1531. With him were 180 men on foot and 37 mounted men. They went ashore on the Río Esmeraldas , in the north of today's Ecuador, and then traveled for months along the Ecuadorian coast, again exposed to the murderous tropical climate, hunger and disease. In the village of Coaque they looted emeralds and gold, which Pizarro sent to Panama to recruit more men. Sebastián de Belalcázar came by ship with 30 men reinforcements. At the turn of the year they reached the island of Puná , 50 km north of Tumbes.

In Tumbes

In April 1532 the Spaniards reached Tumbes again, but the reception was completely different than expected. The first Spaniards were ambushed and murdered. The place had been destroyed, the three Spaniards who had stayed in Tumbes on Pizarro's second trip had been killed. The Spaniards now learned of the civil war, which was just ending at the time, and that Tumbes had been destroyed on Atahualpa's orders because the residents had supported Huáscar. The soldiers saw themselves betrayed by Pizarro and some decided to return to Panama, but Pizarro managed to persuade most of them to continue the venture. Hernando de Soto came by ship from Nicaragua with 100 men reinforcement.

Founding of San Miguel

On May 16, Pizarro gave the order to march south. The path initially led along an Inca road through the Sechura desert . Pizarro managed to win over smaller local tribes, some of which had only lost their independence a few years earlier. On August 15, 1532, near the coast, Pizarro founded his first base on the Río Chira , the settlement of San Miguel ( Piura ).

From there, Hernando de Soto undertook a first exploration of the Andean highlands and reached Cajas and Huancabamba . Here he met Ciquinchara, a scout who Atahualpa had sent to spy on the strangers. Pizarro now learned that Atahualpa was on the verge of victory in the fratricidal war and was staying in the city of Cajamarca , and gave the ambassador gifts.

Train to Cajamarca

On September 24, 1532, Pizarro moved further south - first along the coast, before the steep ascent to the Andean highlands began on November 8, the actual Inca empire. On their way they were constantly watched by Atahualpa's scouts, but not stopped. Atahualpa was reported to be an insignificant number of strangers who could easily be defeated. Atahualpa intended to capture her and use her knowledge of horses and weapons. As the Spaniards approached Cajamarca, he received news that the civil war was victorious. His general quiz had taken Cusco and captured Huáscar.

The Spaniards received a visit from an ambassador of Atahualpa, who greeted them with kind words on behalf of the Inca. Pizarro, in turn, sent a befriended Kaziken to Atahualpa with a message in which he assured him of his friendship. The Kazike returned a few days later: Atahualpa had gathered a huge army, he wanted to take the Spaniards prisoner, his ambassador was in truth a spy and he himself had almost been killed. Warned in this way, the Spaniards moved on and reached Cajamarca on November 14, 1532.

Atahualpa as a prisoner

First encounter with Atahualpa

The city of Cajamarca was almost deserted. Atahualpa camped outside the city with his army of around 30,000–40,000 men. Pizarro sent Hernando de Soto and his brother Hernando as ambassadors to him. Atahualpa received them and announced that he would visit the Spaniards in Cajamarca the following day.

Pizarro takes Atahualpa prisoner

The battle of Cajamarca in an artist's impression

The Spaniards spent the night ready to fight and in fear. Francisco Pizarro came up with the plan to lure Atahualpa into an ambush. He distributed his companions in three buildings in the sprawling palace residence that surrounded the square, and had them quietly prepared for battle in cover.

The following day Atahualpa was carried into the city in a long, hour-long procession by its most important nobles on a sedan chair. There was no Spaniard to be seen in the main square. Then the priest Vicente de Valverde stepped forward and declared that he was a priest and had come to teach God's words to the Indians. The Inca monarch asked him what he based his faith on, and the priest held out his Bible. Atahualpa looked at them, then angrily tossed the book away and reproached the Spaniards for having misappropriated his property on their journey through the country and for having to pay for it. Thereupon Pizarro gave the order to attack. The Spaniards opened fire with their arquebuses and their two cannons and stormed into the square. The mounted soldiers and the loud shots caused a mass panic; whoever was not shot by the Spaniards or cut down with sword cuts was trampled to death by the fearful crowd. This slaughter, later called the Battle of Cajamarca , reportedly killed between 2,000 and 8,000 Indians, while the Spanish suffered almost no casualties. Atahualpa was captured unharmed.

Atahualpa offers a ransom

Cuarto del Rescate in Cajamarca , where Atahualpa was imprisoned

With Atahualpa, the Spaniards had the decisive power factor in their hands. The king was now imprisoned in a cell, but still had authority over his generals and his people. Recognizing the greed of the Spanish invaders for gold, he suggested that they be ransomed. His subjects were to fill his cell with gold within two months to the height that he himself could reach with his hand on tiptoe. When Francisco Pizarro hesitated, surprised, he offered him two more rooms full of silver. Pizarro accepted. In the months that followed, temples and palaces across the country were ransacked on Atahualpa's orders to collect the ransom .

Expeditions to Pachacámac and Cusco

As the weeks passed and Pizarro complained that the gold was coming too slowly, Atahualpa suggested that the Spanish should supervise the removal themselves. So it happened that Hernando Pizarro undertook a three-month journey with 20 riders, which took him 600 km south to the coast, to the sanctuary of Pachacámac , near today's Lima. This temple had long been a religious center and was later conquered by the Incas. From the perspective of the Spaniards, the trip was a disappointment because the priests had hidden the treasures, but on the way back they came to Jauja , where they met Atahualpa's general Chalcuchímac. Hernando Pizarro managed to convince Chalcuchímac to accompany him to Cajamarca. With that the dreaded general fell into the hands of the Spaniards.

Three other Spaniards and an aristocratic Inca were brought to the capital Cusco in sedan chairs and brought quiz quiz to one of Atahualpa's leading generals, whose order to hand over the gold of the city, especially of the Coricancha temple , which he did.

Assassination of Huáscar

Huáscar was still a prisoner of Atahualpa's followers. When he learned that Atahualpa was in the hands of the Spaniards and was ransomed, he again claimed the throne. He was then killed. Atahualpa told Pizarro that this happened against his will (which is very unlikely). The Spaniards were thus deprived of the opportunity to ally themselves with Huáscar.

Distribution of the spoils

On April 14, 1533 Almagro arrived in Cajamarca and brought 150 men - a doubling of the Spanish armed forces. The arrival was a bitter disappointment for the newcomers, as they were not supposed to have any part of the ransom. Almagro and his men therefore urged them to move on to Cusco and seize its riches.

In mid-May the promised gold and silver was handed over and was now melted down. Irreplaceable Inca art was irretrievably destroyed. The loot was 1,326,539 pesos (6,092 kg) gold and 51,610 Castilian marks (11,705 kg) silver. Most of it was distributed to Pizarro's men, a fifth went to the king, Almagro's men received only a very small share. Many of Pizarro's men were now on their way home, and Hernando Pizarro also left to report to the king.

Execution of Atahualpas

The Spaniards were still in a precarious situation: in Cajamarca they were isolated inland, surrounded by tens of thousands of warriors under the command of Atahualpa's generals. In these circumstances, Atahualpa's release would have been suicide. Almagro in particular advocated getting rid of the Incas. When rumors surfaced that an attack on the Spaniards was imminent on Atahualpa's orders, it tipped the scales. In a hastily convened court case, the Inca was sentenced to death on flimsy charges. Atahualpa's greatest advocates - Hernando Pizarro, who was traveling to Spain, and Hernando de Soto, who was visiting customers - were not present.

On 26 July 1533 Atahualpa was with the garrote publicly executed. He had previously been baptized because he was promised that if he did so, he would not be cremated. He was given a Christian burial. Francisco Pizarro himself was later heavily criticized for this regicide by Spanish chroniclers such as Pedro de Cieza de León , who described this act as "the most repulsive thing we Spaniards have ever done in the West Indies" . It is also reported that the interpreter incorrectly translated Felipillo out of motives for revenge, but this was believed to be just an attempt to create a scapegoat.

Train to Cusco

Pizarro and Almagro only ordered the march to Cusco. A younger brother of Huáscar, Túpac Huallpa , was appointed by Pizarro as the new Sapa Inca and swore loyalty to him.

In Jauja

Jauja was halfway to Cusco. Here the Spaniards were attacked by troops from Atahualpa's armed forces, but the Spaniards were able to defeat them - also because they were supported by the Huanca resident there . Túpac Huallpa died in Jauja under unexplained circumstances. General Chalcuchímac, who was taken prisoner by the Spaniards, was later accused of being responsible for his death and was executed. Some Spaniards stayed in Jauja, which became the first permanent base of the Spaniards in the highlands.

Capture of Cusco

Quizquiz made several unsuccessful attempts to stop the Spaniards on their way to Cusco. Eventually he gave up the city and on November 15, 1533 the Spaniards entered Cusco.

The local nobility had previously supported Huáscar almost exclusively, and most of them had been slaughtered with their wives and children at Atahualpa's orders. Pizarro agreed with the surviving nobles to appoint Manco Cápac , another son of Huayna Cápac, as the new Sapa Inca. The Spaniards plundered the capital's gold treasures unless they had already been brought to Cajamarca as a ransom.

Fight against quiz quizzes

Quizquiz had given up on Cusco, but it was still a threat to the Spaniards. The Spaniards stationed there were just able to repel an attack on Jauja with the help of the Huanca. Pizarro sent Hernando de Soto against quiz quiz, and Manco provided him with large contingents of troops under the leadership of his half-brother Paullu . Together they managed to force Quizquiz to retreat north at the Battle of Maraycalla .

Conquering the north

Departure for the Andes

In Cajamarca, Pizarro had dispatched Sebastián de Belalcázar to his northern Peruvian base in San Miguel. More and more Spaniards from other parts of America were arriving there. They urged to conquer the north of the Inca Empire with its metropolis Quito , where there should be great riches. Belalcázar had no authority to do this, but when he learned that Pedro de Alvarado had set up a force of 500 Spaniards in Guatemala and wanted to move to Quito with them, he set out on his own in February 1534 with 200 men in the Andes to reach Alvarado to forestall.

Conquest of Quito

In the northern Inca Empire, roughly equivalent to today's Ecuador, General Rumiñahui Atahualpa's brother Quilliscacha had been murdered and taken over power. In contrast to Quizquiz, which had to fight the Spaniards as an occupier in enemy territory in the south, Rumiñahui had his home and power base in the north. But Belalcázar found strong allies in the people of the Kañari , who had suffered badly under Atahualpa, and he succeeded in bloody battles to push Rumiñahui back. When the Spanish-Canarian troops got into great distress in a battle, they were saved by an eruption of the Tungurahua volcano , which the Inca troops interpreted as a bad omen. Rumiñahui realized that he could not hold Quito, had the treasures carried away and the city burned down, and withdrew to the mountains. Belalcázar took the destroyed Quito in July 1534.

In August Alvarado arrived, and Almagro also appeared, who had rushed to help from Cusco. Almagro bought Alvarado's war material and alleged claims, and Alvarado's men were given leave to serve in Pizarro and Almagro's.

The end of quiz quiz and Rumiñahui

When Quizquiz returned from the south, he was faced with an occupied city and a new Spanish army. After another defeat at the first encounter, his demoralized troops no longer wanted to fight, but Quizquiz refused to give up. Thereupon he was killed by mutinous officers.

Rumiñahui continued to resist with the remains of his fighters, but was captured, tortured and executed by the Spaniards a year later.


Establishment of Lima

Francisco Pizarro initially made Jauja the capital of New Castile . Since the place in the highlands was difficult to reach from Panama, Pizarro traveled to the coast and founded Ciudad de los Reyes, today's Lima , as the new capital in January 1535 .

Almagros train to Chile

At the beginning of 1535, a decree from Charles V arrived, which granted the dissatisfied Diego de Almagro his own right of conquest " Neutoledo " south of Pizarro's dominion. In July of the same year Almagro set out on a large-scale expedition towards Chile, which was on the southern border of the Inca Empire. Manco gave him 12,000 Indians and his brother Paullu. The venture lasted almost two years and ended in fiasco.

Manco Cápac's uprising

Relations between the Spaniards and Manco deteriorated dramatically. Gonzalo and Juan Pizarro, who had stayed in Cusco, humiliated Manco and after attempting to escape at the end of 1535, they were even chained and mistreated. On April 18, 1536 he managed to escape from Cusco, and at the beginning of May the thoroughly prepared uprising began to drive the invaders out of the country.

The garrison in Jauja and the Spaniards scattered in the country were destroyed. Cusco was besieged , but multiple attempts to conquer the city narrowly failed. Francisco Pizarro, who had been able to fend off an attack on Ciudad de los Reyes, tried in vain to bring help to his brothers and sent requests for help to the Spanish colonies of America.

For almost a year, Cusco was cut off from the outside world. The siege ended when Diego de Almagro returned from his unsuccessful Chile expedition and at the same time a relief force under Alonso de Alvarado approached from Lima. Manco withdrew with his remaining army to Vilcabamba .

After Almagro had occupied the city, the dispute between him and the Pizarro brothers over rule in the country escalated. In the battle of Las Salinas (April 26, 1538) he was defeated by the Pizarros and executed.

In the south, the high priest Villac Umu and Manco's uncle Tiso continued the uprising. A Spanish troop, led by Hernando and Gonzalo Pizarro and supported by Paullu and his army, moved from Cusco to today's Bolivia in order to "pacify" the region. After long and difficult fighting, Tiso surrendered in February and Villac Umu in October 1539. Manco, who had narrowly escaped a Spanish commando group near Vilcabamba, now finally switched to guerrilla tactics .

Valdivia conquers Chile

In 1540 Pedro de Valdivia moved with only 150 soldiers through high mountains and desert to Chile. In 1541 he founded the capital Santiago and built up a colonial rule in the following years. This enabled him not only to bring the southernmost part of the Inca Empire under Spanish control, but also areas beyond.

Establishment of the Viceroyalty of Peru

Francisco Pizarro had administered the land and distributed it to his colleagues as encomiendas . In 1541 he was murdered by supporters of the executed Almagro. The Spanish crown then took over the administration and founded the viceroyalty of Peru in 1542 . More troubled years followed, in particular a rebellion (1544–1548) of the encomenderos under the leadership of Gonzalo Pizarro, but then the viceroys managed to build a stable administration.

The end of the Inca Empire

Manco Cápac continued to resist until he was murdered in 1544. In the following years the viceroys tried to persuade his successors Sayri Túpac and Titu Cusi Yupanqui to give up and submit to Spanish suzerainty. Resistance with minor raids alternated with periods of relative peace.

It was not until May 1572 that the Spaniards ended the existence of the exiled kingdom of Vilcabamba with a major attack on the city. Vilcabamba was taken almost without a fight; the last Sapa Inca, Túpac Amaru , Manco Cápac's youngest son, was captured and publicly executed in Cusco on September 24, 1572. With the conquest of Vilcabamba, the previously so powerful Inca empire finally became extinct.

Reasons for the success of the Spaniards

That a few hundred men succeeded in conquering such a vast empire was only possible through a combination of favorable circumstances.

The Spaniards, who fought the Moors for centuries and drove them out of Spain ( Reconquista ), could look back on a knight tradition and were considered to be the best soldiers in Europe. No matter how one judges morally their motives and actions, they showed admirable tenacity and bravery. Their Toledo steel weapons were far superior to those of the Incas, helmets and armor made them largely invulnerable. In contrast, the effect of the still rather unwieldy firearms was of little significance. The horses offered the greatest advantage: riders were far superior to fighters on foot and could also appear quickly and surprisingly. It is telling that the Indians in western North America and the Mapuche in Chile, who had the time to learn horseback riding and European fighting techniques, could long withstand the Europeans.

Atahualpa made fatal mistakes by underestimating Pizarro's small band. Little did he know that they were the vanguard of a major invasion and that his ransom would only lure more Spaniards into the country. The Inca had been cut off from the rest of the world by ocean, rainforest and desert and could rightly assume that their empire spanned almost the entire civilized world. The Spaniards, on the other hand, were used to encountering other high cultures and were able to fall back on experience dating back to antiquity - not least because they knew the script. On the other hand, the fact that the Inca believed the Spaniards to be gods is a myth that only arose decades after the Conquista.

Pathogens brought in from Europe had ravaged the population and weakened the empire even before Pizarro's arrival.

Chance also helped the Spaniards: Pizarro moved to the Andes at the exact time when the country was shaken by the long civil war. He was also fortunate that he met Atahualpa right away in Cajamarca and that all power was concentrated in the person of the Inca. With Atahualpa hostage, his generals were incapacitated. After his death, the ruling system collapsed: nobles rivaled in the struggle for power and many sided with the Spaniards. At the same time, the ruling class, whose claim to leadership was based on decades of success, lost popular support as a result of the civil war and the events of Cajamarca. Peoples subject to the Inca refused to fight the Spaniards, and some allied with them.


There are several first and second hand reports about the conquest of the Inca Empire - but almost only from a Spanish point of view, because the Inca did not know any script:

  • Francisco de Xerez was Francisco Pizarro's private secretary and an eyewitness to Atahualpa's capture. He returned to Spain soon after; In 1534 his book "Verdadera relación de la conquista del Perú" was published .
  • Pedro Pizarro , a relative of the Pizarro brothers, followed Francisco to America in 1530 as a page and was also an eyewitness to the battle of Cajamarca. In old age he wrote the "Relación del descubrimiento y conquista de los reinos del Perú" , which he completed in 1571.
  • Pedro de Cieza de León did not come to Cusco until a decade later, but was able to interview many of the Pizarros' followers. His multi-volume “Crónica del Perú” appeared in 1553.
  • Agustín de Zárate came to Peru in 1543 as a royal accountant. His “Historia de descubrimento y conquista del Peru” appeared in 1555.
  • Titu Cusi Yupanqui , exiled ruler in Vilcabamba, was still a small child at the time of the conquest. In 1570, in a letter to King Philip II and Viceroy García de Castro , the "Relación de cómo los españoles entraron en Birú y el subceso que tuvo Manco Inca en el tiempo que entre ellos vivió" , he described the events from an Inca perspective.

See also


  • Lieselotte and Theodor Engl: The conquest of Peru in eyewitness accounts. 2nd Edition. German paperback publishing house, Munich 1977, ISBN 3-423-01100-9 .
  • John Hemming: The Conquest of the Incas. Mariner, Boston 2012, ISBN 978-0-15-602826-4 .
  • Vitus Huber: The Conquistadors. Cortés, Pizarro and the conquest of America. CH Beck, Munich 2019.
  • Hugh Thomas: Rivers of Gold. The Rise of the Spanish Empire. London 2003 (ND New York 2005).
  • Hugh Thomas: The Golden Empire. Spain, Charles V, and the Creation of America. New York 2010.
  • Hugh Thomas: World Without End. Spain, Philip II, and the First Global Empire. New York 2014.
  • Michael Wood: In the footsteps of the conquistadors. Philipp Reclam jun. Verlag, Stuttgart 2003, ISBN 3-15-010515-3 .

Web links


  1. a b After the Europeans arrived in America, large parts of the indigenous population died from infectious diseases such as smallpox, measles, mumps or flu - even in areas where no Europeans had yet penetrated. Jared Diamond explains in his book Guns, Germs and Steel that the peoples of the Old World had been exposed to many pathogens and developed resistance for thousands of years through close contact with domestic animals; in America, on the other hand, there were no domesticated animals apart from llamas and turkeys.
  2. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 33.
  3. Pedro Pizarro : Relación del descubrimiento y conquista de los reinos del Perú. In: Martín Fernández de Navarrete et al. (Ed.): Documentos inéditos para la Historia de España. Volume V, printed in Madrid 1844, p. 212 ( digitized in the Google book search).
  4. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 31.
  5. Pedro Pizarro : Relación del descubrimiento y conquista de los reinos del Perú. In: Martín Fernández de Navarrete et al. (Ed.): Documentos inéditos para la Historia de España. Volume V, printed in Madrid 1844, p. 215 ( digitized in the Google book search).
  6. San Miguel was first founded on the Río Chira and moved to the Río Piura in 1588 as San Miguel de Piura ( Encyclopædia Britannica, Art. Piura ).
  7. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 29.
  8. The exact content of the address has not been passed down. According to Hemming (footnote on page 42), all chroniclers, with the exception of Pedro Pizarro, agree that it was not the formal requerimiento demanding that the Christian religion and the sovereignty of the Spanish crown be recognized. It is questionable whether the interpreter was able to translate true to the content.
  9. Francisco de Xerez and Pedro Pizarro describe the conversation largely in agreement. There are other versions, e.g. B. It is said that Atahualpa held the Bible to his ear to hear if she spoke, and Valverde himself gave the signal for the attack.
  10. Francisco de Xerez speaks as an eyewitness of 2,000 deaths, see Verdadera relación de la Conquista del Perú, p. 96. According to Hemming, later chroniclers cite “as usual” higher numbers, up to 8,000 ( “As usual, their numbers tended to increase with time. ” - Hemming, The conquest of the Incas . 2012, p. 535). See also Francisco de Xerez: History of the Discovery and Conquest of Peru - Chapter 22 .
  11. Pedro Pizarro only speaks of two Spaniards: Pedro Martín de Moguer and Martín Bueno. (Relación del descubrimiento y conquista de los reinos del Perú, p. 241, digitized in the Google book search). Other chroniclers also mention Juan de Zárate. Francisco de Xerez also speaks of three Spaniards, see Verdadera relación de la Conquista del Perú p. 117.
  12. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 73.
  13. ^ Francisco de Xerez: Verdadera relación de la conquista del Perú. P. 54.
  14. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 82.
  15. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 172.
  16. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 110.
  17. Jared Diamond : Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies . WWNorton, 1999, ISBN 0-393-06922-2 , p. 76.
  18. Jared Diamond: Guns, Germs and Steel. 1999, p. 80.
  19. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 97.
  20. Pedro Pizarro writes: "Had Guainacapa [Huayna Cápac] lived when we Spaniards came to the country, it would have been impossible to win it, because his people loved him very much." - see Relación del descubrimiento y conquista de los reinos del Perú, p. 236f.
  21. ^ John Hemming: The conquest of the Incas. 2012, p. 53.