The wonder that was Inca
Fifteenth century saw the rise of a great American empire of the Inca, which can only be equated with the contemporary Majapahita Empire of Indonesia, or the mighty Srivijaya Empire of the shailendra dynasty in south-east Asia or an ancient golden age famed Gupta empire of India.
Incas were believed to be the humble island farmers and llama Herders of the Highland region who developed one of the most remarkable political organizations. Prior to about 1438 A.D., their domain was a small area in the vicinity of Cuzco; A.D.1470, they ruled supreme from Quito to Lake Titicaca, and twenty five years later their frontiers extended from southern Colombia to central Chile. The control over an empire with a horizontal extension of some 5000 kilometers and an altitudial variation of 4000 meters was maintained by systematic application of ingenious administrative measures which Incorporated several elements ancient in Andean culture.
The Inca relay runners, who could bring fresh fish from the sea-shore to the dining table of the emperor in Cuzco in two days and transmit a message through the length of the empire in fifteen days were refined messengers depicted on Monica Pottery. The famed Inca highways, with staircases and tunnels chiseled out of solid rock, suspension bridges crossing streams and gorges, and rest-houses for official travellers at regular intervals, are shadowed by less extensive road system of earlier times. The closely fitted stone masonary is the hallmark on Inca architecture which has its antecedent in Tiahuanaco stone construction.
There are several legends about the origin of the incas, Gracias records a tradition that the founder of the Inca kingdom. Manch Capacity, and this sister were created by the ‘Sun God’ on an island in Lake Titicaca. Another legend tell that Manch Capac and his brother and sisters came to Peru through the three cave openings in hill known as Tampi Tocco (Tavern Hole) at. Place called Paccari Tampi (Dawn Taverns) about 30 kilometers south-east of Cuzco.
According to Thor Hyerdahl the ancestors of the Incas were the common sea-farers who descended from the central coast of Peru. They were adventurous sailors. A branch of them was successful in getting up to Ecuador, on this island of Guayau near the shores of Ecuador. On this island Manch Capacity decided to take a voyage so as to find out more favourable region to settle. He divided his 200 people in three groups. Two of these were never heard again, but he and his followers landed near Ica on the Peruvian coast. He crossed the mountains and finally reached on the bank of Lake Titicaca.
Manch Capac was known as Manch Ayyar. His three brothers were named as Auca Ayyar, Cachi Ayyar and Uehu Ayyar while his four sisters were known as Ocllo Amma, Huaco Amma, Cora Amma and Raua Amma.
Again after some years Manch Capacity along with his brothers, sisters and those were willing to participate in new adventure left the settlement on the bank of the Lake Titicaca and proceeded northward to the valley of Cuzco. These brothers and sisters were the progenitors of eight clans. During the adventurous migration they paused for a year or two in several villages. The brothers of manco capacity were assassinated on the way. Finally Manco Capac reached in the valley of Cuzco and settled there. He married his diste Ocllo Amma and Sinchi Roca was born to them. The Inca legend tells that four Ayyar were the sons of the sun and they came from the Lake Titicaca.
Traditional Dynastic History
Manch Capac, the first Inca ruler founded the capital of Cuzco and laid the foundation of the Inca empire in 12th century A.D. The traditional list and the sequence of the Inca kings up to the destruction of the empire by the Spaniards gives 13 names.
- Manch capacity
- Sinchi Roca
- Lioque Yupanqui
- Mayta Capacity
- Capacity Yupanqui
- Inca Roca
- Yuhuar Huacac.
- Virococha Inca
- Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui (1438-1471 AD)
- Topa Inca Yupanqui (1471-1493)
- Huyana Capac (1493-1525)
- Huascar (1525-1532)
- Athuallpa (1532-33)
The first four rulers ruled over a small area, and there is little reliable historical record of the period.
The fourth emperor Mayta Capac appointed his son Capac Yupanqui as a ruler, though he was not the eldest son. His elder brother was considered ugly and was refused the throne. Capac Yupanqui was the first Inca ruler who conquered lands outside the Cuzco valley.
Inca Roca Succeeded his father and subjugated some groups that lived south-east of Cuzco. He had several sons. One of his sons Yuhuar Huacac was kidnapped by a neighbouring group when he was eight year old. Yahuar Huacac’s mother Mama Mikay was a Huayllaca woman who had been promised to the leader of another group called ‘Ayarmaca’. The promise was broken and Mama Mikay married Inca Roca. The Ayarmaca went to war with the Huayllaca and defeated them. As a peace offering the Huayllaca agreed to deliver Mama Micay’s son to the Ayarmaca. The Ayarmaca held the prince fir reveal years before returning him to his father.
Two years before his death Inca To declared Yuhuar Huacac as the seventh emperor, ensuring a peaceful succession to the throne. His brother Vicaquiruo and Apo Matra were able military leaders and Incorporated lands south and east of Cuzco into the Inca Dominion. Yahuar Huacac’s first queen was Ayarmac. She bore him three sons. The emperor named her second son as his successor but due to the intrigues of his another wife, the son and shortly after the father, both were assassinated. The elders chose ‘Viracocha Inca’ as the eighth emperor.
viracocha Inca adopted the policy of extending the Inca empire. Till his time nighbouring ethnic groups were conquered byt they were left undisturbed until the Inca changed this pattern of attacking raiding and plundering and planned to establish permanent rule over these groups. He was assisted by his uncles Vicaquirao and Apo Mayta. Their frist victory over Ayarmaca kingdom in the southern Cuzco valley provided a model for many subsequent campaigns. They first conquered upper part of Urubamba valley which was behind the Ayarmaca territory and then attacked Ayarmaca from two directions; one force coming from Cuzo and the other from Urubamba valley.
Urubamba valley was an inportant passage way between Cuzco and the Lake Titicaca basin. Soon the Inca got an opportunity to interfere between two Ayarmaca-speaking Kingdoms the Colla and the Lupaca in the northern part of the Titicaca basin. The Inca sided with the Lupaca.
A group called Chanca was emerging as a political power in the western area of the Inca domain. They required land to fulfill their needs, hence they moved from their original place in Huancavelica and conquered Quechua in 1438. After conquering Quechua the Chanca attacked the Inca. For some time there had been palance intringue in Cuzco over who would succeed Viracocha Inca to the throne.
The emperor chose Inca Urcon as his successor but the two generals Vicaquerao and Apo Mayta supported another son, Cusi Inca Yupanqui. As the Chanca approached Cuzco, Viracocha Inca and Inca Urcon withdrew to a fort near Calca. Cusi Inca Yupanqui, two generals and few nobles defended the city successfully, and inflicted two heavy defeats on the Chanca.
Cusi Inca Yupanqui then tried to resolve the differences with this father but the negotiations failed.
Cusi Inca Yupanqui
Cusi Inca Yupanqui set himself up as emperor. The power and prestige of the Cuzco group increased. Many people left the Calca fraction and joined Cusi Inca Yupanqui, Who now took the title ‘Pachacuti’. Now Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui had to deal with the Chabca as well as with his father’s fraction. He managed to make alliance with Quechua against the Chanca. Meanwhile Viacocha Inca died, and Inca Urcan was also killed in an encounter with the Cuzco group. In 1445 Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui decided to punish his disobedience and Capaca Yupanqui was killed before he reached Cuzo.
Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui now entrusted the campaign od Titacaca basin to two of his older sons. Another son Topa Inca, Yupanqui was sent on northern expedition. He conquered the Chimu Capial at Chan Chan and advanced southward up to Pachacamac. He returned to Cuzco victorius and with the spirit of unchallanging Inca power.
Building up of the Empire; its management
The vast expansion of the empire created many problems, Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui now decided to strengthen the administration to govern a large number of diverse ethnic groups. Upon voluntary surrender or forceful conquest of a new area local chiefs were incorporated into the administrative bureaucracy. Some of their sons were taken to Cuzco to be educated with those of the Inca nobility. It ensured their fathers. Local images and their attendant priests were also brought to Cuzco, which fromally assimilated them into the state religious hierarchy. The official language ‘Quechua’ and the state religion were made mandatory.
The highway was extended, storehouses and other governmental buildings were constructed. The tribute was levied according to the assessement of the local resources. If the resistance was severe or prolonged, populations of wholw villages were removed to distinct parts or the empire and replaced with the loyal subjects familiar with the procedures and requirments of existence under Inca administration.
Sacsahuaman, the huge fortress was built on a hill overlooking the city. Agricultural projects were undertaken, rivers were channeled agricultural terraces were built on the surrounding hill sides. Geographically the empire was divided into four quarters and the quarters into smaller unit ideally containing 10,000, 5000, 1000, 500, 100, 50 and 10 heads of families. A group of officers kept census record up to date, so that when labour was required for construction, mining, the army or some other activity the manpower available in each region was easily ascertained. Taxes were paid in procedure or in labour. During the absence of the head of the family, the family was supported from public warehouses. Records of tremendous volume and veriety were kept without the use of writing, with the help of quipu, a cord from which were suspended a series of strings with knots arranged. Special accountants were charged with this task.
”Cuzco was the heart of the empire. It was a cosmopolitan city with public buildings of great beauty and wealth. There were long streets and houses made all of stones. In many partys of the city there were splendid buildings of the Lord Incas where the heir to the throne held his festivities. The beautiful temple of the sun, richest in gold and silver had a circumference of over 122 meters. It was surrounded by a strong wall. The whole building was of fine quarried stones, all matched and joined. No mortar or lime was employed in it. It had many gates and finely carved gateways. Halfway up the wall ran a stripe of gold two handspans wide and four finger thick. The gateway and doors were covered with golden sheets.
Apart from this there were twenty sheeps of gold with their lambs and the shepherds who guarded them with their slings and staffs all of this metal. There were many tubs of gold and silver and emaralds and goblets, pots, and every kind vessel all of gold.’’ As this was the main and most important city. At certain times of the year the Indians of the provinces came there, some to construct buildings, others to clean the streets and districts, and anything else they were ordered….And as this city was full of strange and foreign peoples, for there were Indians from Chile, Pasto and Canari. Chachapoyas, Huancas, Collas and all the other tribes to be found in the provinces…each of them by the governors of the city. They observed the customs of their own people and dressed after the fashion of own land, so that if there were a hundred thousand men, they could be easily recognized by the insignia they were about their Heads.”
This is the description of the great capital of the mighty Inca empire, by Cieza de Leon as he saw in thirty years after the conquest.’’
Topa Inca Yupanqui became the 10th emperor. He was crowned in 1471. He had participated in the building up of Inca empire in his youth with his father and had an excellent experience of ruling the vast empire. Huana Capac succeeded Topa Inca Yupanqui in 1493. He was the king loved and obeyed by his subjects. He was a man of few words and more deeds. The unfortunate period of the Inca accompanied the last days of Huana Capac.
Spanish incasion began almost in his reign. Fanscisco Pizarro as early as in 1513 had become a wealthy citizen and Mayor of Panama, the town built by the Spaniards, in 1526 in an incidence of meeting an Inca cargo he came to know about the golden land of peru and the golden empire of the Inca.
The greedy old world, especially of theEuropean countries, styled itself as the most civilised and advanced world but practically adopted the most uncivilized policy of invasion, plunder, massacre, slavery, convernsion and everthing against humanity. The pope Alexander VI had donated the New world to the European countries as if he was the master of the world and even its creator. When Pizarro reached the port of Tumbes, the northern most coastal city of the Inca empire the Inca noble officer was shown the document of the Pope. In 1530 Pizarro was back with his brothers, partners and abput 200 men.
Before Pizarro was back, Huana Capac had received the news of strange foreigners probing the fringes of the empire. Unfortunately the epidemic that had devastated the Aztecs and the Mayas was carried south overland through Darien and Colombia and burst upon Huana Capac and his 20 million people. Huana Capac died in his fifty. According to Pachakuti Yamki an Indian noble of 16th century tells that Spaniards had sent a gift of infected material to the Inca court as a result of which the king, his general Mihachamayta, many other captains died within two days.
Huana Capac had warned his children against the foreign invasion. Had Huana Capac survived, the Spaniards would have had to face a shrewd, experienced and venerated ruler at the height of his powers. Huana capac’s warning was also forgotten. There was the war for succession. Huaskar favoured by Cuzo and Atahuallpa based in the north both claimed the throne. Civil war broke out. The royalty was divided. Restive subjects got a chance to revolt. Huaskar ruled from 1525 to 1532, after which Atahuallpa become sovereign . this was the time when Pizarro reappeared with his 200 men and a cavalry and the lack of diplomacy and too much faith in truth led to the utter ruin of the mighty empire of the Incas.
The last King
The simple hearted Inca emperor had offered the best hospitality to the invaders but they planned his capture and trap was well laid in his own palace, where he had agreed to give them audience. At noon the emperor marched in a huge procession with oriental splendour numerous people just sweeping every particle of rubbish, led the procession within a mile of the city. The emperor wanted to have his camp, nut Pizarro who was determined on his murderous intention said he was waiting dine with them and that he must come to the palace the same evening. The emperor agreed and advised his general to leave the army behind and enter palace with only a few of them unarmed. The Spaniards were overjoyed to hear that he would spend the night with them. The emperor reached the square which was bigger than any in Spain. The attendant nobles were loaded with gold and silver ornaments; the Emperor was carried on a sedan, a solid throne of gold of inestimable value. Not a Spaniard was to be seen and still the Emperor did not suspect and trap and he surprisingly asked his people, ‘’Where are the strangers ?’’ then came Val Verde, a spanish missionary who told the imprisoned Emperor to accept christianity and become a tributary of the Emperor of Spain who had commissioned Pizarro to conquer and convert the natives of the western hemisphere. The eyes of the Indian monarch flashed fire and his dark brown grew darker as he replied.
“I will be no man’s tributary, I am greater than any prince of the earth. Your emperor may be a great prince; I do not doubt it. When I see that he has sent his subjects so far across the waters, and I am willing to hold him as a brother. As for the Pope you speak he must be crazy of giving away countries which do not belong to him. For my faith , I will not change it. Your own god, as you say, was put to death by the very men whom he created, but my god still lives in the Heavens, and takes care of his children.’’
The authority of Spanish historians, ‘Prescott’ of 16th century gives the above account of the tragic end of the glorious Inca culture. The Emperor was then arrested. His people were murdered and robbed. The Spaniards cheated the Emperor and executed him in a ruthless manner. Prescott describes,
“The treatment of Atahuallpa from first to last forms undoubtedly one of the darkest chapters in Spanish colonial history. There may have been massacres perpetrated on a more extended scale and executions accompanied with a greater refinement of cruelty. But the blood stained annals of conquest afford no such example of cold hearted and systematic persecution, not of the enemy, but one whose whole deportment had been that of a friend and a benefactor. From the hour that Pizarro and his followers had entered to them by the natives. Their first act on crossing the mountains was to kidnap the Emperor and massacre his people. The seizure of his person might be vindicated by those who considered the end as justifying the means, on the ground that it was indispensable to secure the triumphs of the cross. But no such apology can be urged for the massacre of the unarmed and helpless population as wanton as it was wicked.’’
‘’The kingdom had experienced a revolution of the most decisive kind. Its ancient institutions were subverted. Its heaven descended aristocracy was levelled almost to the condition of the peasants. The people became the serfs of the conquerers. Their dwellings in the capital were seized and appropriated. The temples were turned into stables, the royal palaces into barracks for the troops. The sanctity of religious house was violated and thousand of metrons and maidens, who lived in chaste seclusion in the conventual establishment, were now turned abroad and became the prey of a licentious soldiery. A favorite wife of the young Inca was debauched by Spanish officers.’’
The most significant feature of the religion of the Indians of South America is that they are the children of the sun and worshippers of the ancestors. The origin of the sophisticated civilization is ascribed to the white bearded men. The leader of these culture bringers was Virachocha and the first place of his residence was on the Island of Titicaca Lake. He was very wise and was the child of the Sun.
The mythology of the South American Indians has an antiquity of thousands of years. But, based on the mythology and agelong beliefs and faiths, Panchacuti Inca Yupanqui introduces the Inca pantheon in which the first place is occupied by ‘Viracocha’. He is called ‘Viracocha Pachayacuchi’ who is the creator of the world.
After the conquest of the Chancas by the Incas the order of the Pantheon was decided by the priests instructed by the Emperor. It was the process of assimilation of the deities of different tribes and the age old religious ideas and iconography.
Viracocha was the owner of everything; He bestowed to the Sun the special power of creating all the elements. Moon was his wife and the stars his sons. A temple in cuzco was the temple of Viracocha. He is the first cause and creator of everything and as such he is ‘Ticsi Viracochan’. He is all powerful. He can flatten the hills and dry up the ocean.
Another important deity was ‘Illapa’. He is the ‘Thunder God’ the god of rain. He was represented as a man in luminious clothes symbolising the lightening with a war, club in one hand and sling in the other. When the people were thirsting for rain Illap with his sling broke the jar, in which his sister kept the rain water, whereupon it streamed down over the earth.
If Viracocha resembles the Hindu god ‘Brahma’ the Illapa resembles with ‘varuna with a Kalasha [Jar] and Pasha [sling] in his hands.Viracocha, as an ancestor of the kings also resembles with the Hindu God of war Indra – the celebrated deity to whom most of the hymns of Rigveda belong.
Mother Earth is an equally important goddess. She is called Pachamama. She is the mother and creator of the mankind. The good black earth, the edible plants and animals and all nature. The Hindu tradition believes in mother Goddess who is ‘Prithavi Mata’ and they are the sons of ‘Prithavi Mata’.
The Incas worshipped the Mountains. Mountains is the cause of wind and rain. It represents the power of Almighty. The mountain worship resembles the ‘Govardhana Pooja’ [the worship of the Govardhana mountain.]
The Incas were Sun worshippers, the sun was called in [Aditya of Hindu Gods]. He was the progenitor of the royal dynasty. The priests and chosen woman served all the Gods. the sun was so pro-eminent that the chronicles always referred to the woman as the virgins of the sun and to the shrines as Sun temples. As Pachamama was the Goddess of Earth, so Mama Cocha was the Goddess of the Seas. [Hindu-Samudra devata]. She was the Goddess of wealth and of adventure. The Incas were skillful mariners. Maritime culture was an important part of their life. They prayed the sea Goddess for the safe Voyages, for the gain of wealth and for the prosperity of the nature.
The royal family was supposed to be the descendent of the God. they descended from the heaven. Due to this divine origin of the kings the Inca emperors were mummified. In full regal attire the dead monarchs were seated in a row on golden chairs along the walls of the Sun temples.
The Incas had several deities, and sacred shrines. They were called ‘Huacas’. The Indians of America believed that the Huacas speak, when they are consulted during the festival in the retreat of Wikambamba. The Huacas are consulted during the festival in the retreat of Wikambamba. The Huacas are also supposed to be the spirits, who in one from or other instruct the devotee, create the confidence in him in his difficulties. They have powers to dominate the forces of nature. When Inca Yupanqui opened the campaign against the Chancas, it is believed that he saw the supreme God Viracocha in his dream who gave him strength and self confidence to fight the enemy. The weeping God sculptured in the megalithic ruins of Tiahuanco is also supposed to be Viracocha.
The state religion of the empire was developed so as to honour the faiths of all the ethnical communities dwelling in the empire. Many of the tribes like Ayamaras and Chancas had their own beliefs since pre-Christian era. The system of rituals, that included prayers, offerings sacrifices also had gradual evolution and assimilation of several faiths. The Inca hymn and prayers give the feeling that the object of the worship was to purify the soul and march toward the attainment of the salvation. The implicit love, devotion and attachment to God detached the devotee from evil inclination and makes him fearless.
Moral Qualities of the Inca
The moral qualities of the empire were described to Phillip II by one of the Spanish conquerors of Cuzco, Manico Serra de Leguicamo, who in his will, unburdened his conscience to phillip II. he says,
‘’His majesty should know that we found these lands in such a state that there was not even a robber or a vicious or idle man, or aulterous or immoral woman. All such conduct was forbidden. Immoral persons could not exist and every on had honest and profitable occupations…. The Incas were feared; obeyed, respected venerated by their subjects, who considered them to be most capable lords… we were only a small number of spaniards when we undertook the conquest and I desire his majesty to understand why I have set down this account; it is to unburden my conscience and confess my guilt. For we have transformed the Indians who had such wisdom and committed so few crimes, excesses or extravagances that the owner of 100,00 pesos of gold or silver would leave his door open placing a broom fixed to a bit of wood across the entrance to show that he was absent. This sign was enough to prevent anyone from entering or taking anything.’’
“Thus they scorned us when they saw among us thieves and men who incited their wives and daughters to sin…. This kingdom has fallen tinto such disorse…it has passed from one extreme to another. There was no evil; now there is almost no good.’’ The first Inca Manco Capac had expressly ordered all the kings who descended from him never to permit bloodshed in any conquest they might make unless it was absolutely necessary. During the course in battle were released with kind words which they were to convey to their chiefs with offers of peace and friendship. The wounded were dressed, and on their recovery sent away with the message and were told that they could return to fight. Woman and children found in the fields and caves were tended and then returned to their parents and husbands with entreaties not to persist in their obstinacy, since it was impossible for them to defeat the children of the Sun.
The Incas had philosophers called ‘Amautas’, who argued that man consisted of soul as well as body and after death came the resurrection. The world of the ‘amautas’ had three parts. Heaven, Earth and Hell. the ‘amautas’ composed stories about famous events in popular language. These were passed from generation to generation.
Sun was the visible god to whom the Inca offered sacrifices and dedicated great festivals. ‘Pachacamac’ was the invisible supreme God who created the Universe. As Pachacamac was invisible, there were no temples and offerings. The people adored him in their hearts.
Tiahuanaco – The land of Manu
Tiahuanaco, the archaeological site of long antiquity and the place of many legends contains the remains of the Sun temple of Pre-Christian period. It was once on a promotary of 300 kilo meters long Lake Titicaca and was defended on the landward side by a larger moat. The city was completely encircled by a wide mote filled with water from the lake. The ruins are now scattered and divided in to three sections, known as, the Akapana or thr Hill of the Sacrifices; the Kalasaya or temple of the Sun; and the Tunca-Puncu or Place of ten doors in addition to several smaller groups. Isolated buildings and numerous monuments and idols.
Most conspicuous of all is the Akapana, an immense truncated pyramidal hill one hundred and seventy feet in height and measuring 496 x 650 feet at the base with each side almost mathematically in line with the respective cardinal points of the compass. Originally the entire surface was faced with huge rectangular stone blocks and smaller stones. An immense stairway once led to the summit. The greater part of the artificial hill is occupied by huge artificial lake provided with beautifully cut and fitted and most scientifically designed overflow conduits. The traces of the dock or mole are to be seen just north of the principal ruins.
Monolithic gate of the Sun at Tiahuanaco is gigantic sculpture nearly ten feet high and 165 feet wide, carved out of a single block. Forty eight square figures in three rows flank a being who represents a flying god. The legend of the city tells that a woman, whose name was Oryana descended from the heaven to fulfill the task of becoming the mother of the Earth. She had only four fingers, which were webbed. The great mother gave birth to seventy earth children, and returned to the stars. An interesting typical belief is that the temple and the city were built in a day.
The religious or rather cultural symbol of Swastika is found engraved on the stones used in constructing the temple. The same symbol is also found on ceramics of at least by 1000 B.C.
“Sumerian inscriptions frequently refer to Land of Manu, sometimes associated with Cloud Lake, and usually designated as being in the mountains of the Sun-set. The Sumerian explorers were in search of the sun-set land, which was a semi-fabulous or traditionary land. Lake Titicaca is the only lake that fits the description and the most ancient remains of pre-Incan civilization those on the island of the Sun at Tiahuanaco.’’
“In all the ageold traditions of the Peruvian races, it is related that white men came from the Sun-rise across the water and created temples and statues on the island of the sun and on the main land near the lake.’’
One more interesting presumption is made by James Bailey. He identifies the Atlas mountain of the Greek legends with Andes mountains with the highest altitude of 23000 fett. Atlas the Greek hero acquired the title of holding up the sky partly because of the picturesque and unusual altitude of his capital city. Early Egyptian dynasties said that the mountain which held up the sky was called Manu. Manu had early explored the Atlantic and perhaps planted the first colony on Titicaca.
The Incas were the culture Masters, thus having the heredity of glorious culture of about 4000 years, as great ceremonial centers were constructed on the coastline of Peru with pyramids and temples between 2500 and 1800 B.C. Incas not only related themselves with the worship of the sun they called themselves as sons of the Sun.
Trans-Pacific as well as trans-Atlantic contacts in relation to the oldest history of the new world were neglected so far. But the archaeologists and historians are now aware of the short comings of even advanced techniques in putting forth the decisive results of their studies.
“For example, writing is almost universally believed to be indispensable to the development of civilization, but it was unknown to the Inca, who achieved one of the greatest, Empire of antiquity. The wheel is another invention often cited as essential, but wheel was never a significant element in aboriginal New World culture. The Maya had the world’s most accurate calendar in 1492, but lacked draft animals and iron, other ingredients usually considered crucial to cultural advance.’’
“The histories of old and new worlds were not completely independent. It is now clear that trans-Pacific voyages reached the Americas probably several times.
– Dr. Sharad Hebalkar