Inca Religion and Customs
University of Texas Press, 28/06/2010 - 279 páginas
Completed in 1653, Father Bernabe Cobo's Historia del Nuevo Mundo is an important source of information on pre-conquest and colonial Spanish America. Though parts of the work are now lost, the remaining sections which have been translated offer valuable insights into Inca culture and Peruvian history.
Inca Religion and Customs is the second translation by Roland Hamilton from Cobo's massive work. Beginning where History of the Inca Empire left off, it provides a vast amount of data on the religion and lifeways of the Incas and their subject peoples. Despite his obvious Christian bias as a Jesuit priest, Cobo objectively and thoroughly describes many of the religious practices of the Incas. He catalogs their origin myths, beliefs about the afterlife, shrines and objects of worship, sacrifices, sins, festivals, and the roles of priests, sorcerers, and doctors.
The section on Inca customs is equally inclusive. Cobo covers such topics as language, food and shelter, marriage and childrearing, agriculture, warfare, medicine, practical crafts, games, and burial rituals.
Because the Incas apparently had no written language, such postconquest documents are an important source of information about Inca life and culture. Cobo's work, written by one who wanted to preserve something of the indigenous culture that his fellow Spaniards were fast destroying, is one of the most accurate and highly respected.
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On his way to Peru, Cobo stopped for over a year in the West Indies. Continuing
on through Panama, he reached Lima in 1599. The colonial town of Los Reyes,
Lima, was a cultural center that boasted the best schools in Spanish America.
Peru and Tierra Firme in the early colonial period. The map at right shows
modern national boundaries. Modified from The Men of Cajamarca, by James
Lockhart (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1972). Introduction monuments in
Cuzco and ...
This puts his work at the beginning of modern scientific research just before 1895
, when another European working in Peru, the German archaeologist Max Uhle,
started the field work and research with accounts by Cobo and others that ...
to It The Indians of Peru were so idolatrous that they worshiped as Gods almost
every kind of thing created. Since they did not have supernatural insights, they
fell into the same errors and folly as the other nations of pagans, and for the same
All of the Indian nations of this Kingdom of Peru agreed that man's beginning was
followed by a Universal Flood in which everyone perished except a very few who
were saved by the Creator's divine providence in order for them to repopulate ...
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