Glossary and Terms of Inca Empire

Apu –
One of the four administrators of an Inca Empire quarter, or suyu. Each Apu served on the emperor’s imperial council.

Ayllu –
An ayllu, the fundamental building block of the community, was composed of several families. An ayllu was given land according to the number of persons in the group.

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A messenger who worked primarily for the emperor and delivered communications across the empire. The chaski passed on their word to the following runner as they travelled between checkpoints throughout a large network of roadways. Most messages were memorised and spoken aloud.

Chimu –
A strong tribe that rose to prominence in Peru circa 900 AD. They were subjugated by the Inca approximately 1470 AD.

The conquistador
A general and explorer in the Spanish military. The conquistadors set forth in pursuit of both treasure and new regions for Spain.

The primary spouse of the Sapa Inca and the queen of the Inca Empire.

Cuzco –
The centre of the Inca Empire and its original location. It was a city-state for the first several hundred years, ruling only the territory immediately surrounding the city. Today, it remains a significant city in Peru.

For the Inca, the huaca was a holy item that was home to a spirit. It could be man-made or organic. Stones, mountains, amulets, statues, and mummies are huaca examples.

Capac Huayna –
He was the eleventh Inca emperor, and it was under his rule that the Inca Empire reached its zenith. The Spanish came at the time he passed away from smallpox.

Inca –
The Inca were the descendants of Cuzco’s initial founders inside the Inca Empire. They were the imperial nobles and led opulent lives.

Inti –
The Sun God, the Inca’s most revered deity.

Intihuatana –
A stone used in rituals that is connected to the sun and the Inca calendar.

Capac Manco
Manco Capac, the first Sapa Inca, established the Kingdom of Cuzco.

In Machu Picchu.
The “lost city” of the Inca that the Spanish never found and destroyed.

Mit’a –
Each male citizen of the Inca Empire was required to pay this kind of labour tax by working for the government. This includes work on temples or other governmental structures as well as vocations like being an army soldier.

The growth of the Kingdom of Cuzco into the Inca Empire was begun by Pachacuti, the ninth Inca emperor. The Tawantinsuyu was founded by him.

Peru –
The contemporary nation where Cuzco, the heart of the Inca Empire, was situated.

The Spanish conquistador who overthrew the Inca was Francisco Pizarro.

The dialect used by the Incas.

Quipu –
A collection of strings with knots of varying diameters used to record numbers and codes.

Inca Sapa –
The Inca Empire’s head of state and emperor.

Suyu –
A significant Inca Empire division. Four suyu, each headed by an apu, comprised the empire. Cuzco stood in the middle of the four suyu.

The Inca term for their empire. “Land of the Four Quarters” is what it refers to.

Thatki –
A distance measurement scale with “one pace” as the unit.

The Tokoyrikoq –
The tokoyrikoq were government-employed inspectors. They made sure that everyone in the empire complied with the laws.

In Vilcabamba
The Inca Empire’s final haven. The Inca Empire vanished forever after it was conquered by the Spanish in 1572.

The Viracocha
The Inca god of creation who built the Earth and was the father of Inti, the god of the sun.

A. Willaq Umu
The Inca’s most revered priest. usually the Sapa Inca’s brother or some close relative.