• Social structure

The Inca society was perfectly organized. All in the Inca society knew in what position they were occupying. On top were Sapa Inca, or the emperor, and Coya (the queen). They had all the power. Them came the nobles, who often were the priests and realtives of past emperors or the current ones. These two first social groups were the privileges groups. After, there were craftsmen and architects, theywere very high on the social ladder because of the skill that they had was requiered by the Empire. Then came the working class, often justfarmers that were kept in their social groupings. After this, were slaves and peasantsof the society. The craftsmen and the architects had more rights than farmers, slaves and peasants. Only noble children went to school. Here, children learned laws, religion, the art of the war and also they learned quechuan (the Inca lenguage). Peasants gave lessons to his sons. Peasntas went to the army when they were 20 years old. Women peasants' also worked in the land.
Between the Incas, the intention of the government was to promote the mutual help between the subjects. All people was working, excepting the patients, old people and the very young ones. There were not paid the workers by money; all that they were producing was distributed between them by means of a system of tax. The food was preserved in strores to be distributed between the public in the times of shortage.

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  • Family life.

Most of the family of the Andes lived on the land they cultivates, or next to it, forming villages in the mountains. Their houses were built of stone blocks and mud filled the scream. A curtain of skins served to protect the home against the wind.
In Andean homes there were no beds or chairs. The family members slept on mats, putting squat on the floor to eat or work. The mean meal was done at night. It was usually a stew made with potatoes, corn, beans and other similar products, seasoning with strong spices. They also ate roast corn, and sometimes, in indicated occasions, ate guinea pigs.
All family members worked hard. Everyone participated in the work of planting and harvesting. However, there were other jobs apart from them. The women made clothing for the wholo family. Men made shoes as slippers and sandals also for the whole family.

  • Threads and Fabrics.

We have very few samples of Inca’s fabrics; most of them they rotted with the step of the centuries, in the humid climate of the high lands. Nevertheless, guiding by the found fragments we know that the Incas were a few skilful weavers.
All the young women, from very early age were learning to spin and to weave. Also they were devoting themselves to gather plants from which the dyes were extracted by those who were coloring the wool of alpaca. This one was dyed before proceeding to his thread; then, the women were making a few hot soft pieces to the tact, which they were sewed suitably in order to do the cloths.
The fabrics destined for the family of the Inca were an object of major attentions. These pieces were elaborated by professional weavers in collaboration with the “Virgins of the Sun ". These women were using silky wools with brilliant of colors.

  • The Craftsmen and their Works.

In the Inca's epoch, the craftsmen constituted one of the unions most respected of the community. The craftsman was situated in possession of a special skill and was hoping that this one was used in good of all. The State it was busy with feeding him and to his family.
The specialist craftsmen were elaborating only the thinnest objects, not dealing with those of daily use. Unfortunately, there have come to the present day few samples of his works, since the majority of his accomplishments were fused by the Spanish conquerors. It is known, nevertheless, that they had reached a great level of quality. To the precious metals form was given them by means of a patient work ofhammering, or they were fusing for the forgotten method of the lost wax.
The potter's wheel was not known by the Incas, so that they were making his vases and jars mounting strips curled of clay, some on others, up to achieving the form needed for his object. The jars and the vases were getting then in an oven, being identical with them geometrical designs that were repeating themselves constant. The used painting was a liquid solution of clay mixed with mineral pigments. Hereby the most common tonalities were tried: the red color, a kind of purple, kind of white and black.

Monumental architecture.

Architecture was the most important of the Inca's arts. The main example is the capital city of Cuzco. The breathtaking site of Machu Picchu was constructed by Inca engineers. The stone temples constructed by the Incas used a mortaless construction that fit together so well that a knife could not be fitted through the stonework.

The rocks used in construction were sculpted to fit together exactly by repeatedly lowering a rock onto another and carving away any sections on the lower rock where the dust was compressed. The tight and the concavity on the lower rocks made them extraordinarily stable.

  • The Inca Roads

In such a rough and difficult zone of area as the Andes, the Incas needed to have a good system of roads to be able to keep communicated
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well the different points of their empire. From north to south two principal road links were spreading. These were crossed by hundreds of minor ways, which were going well together to the different settlements and villages.
In the high lands, the roads were paved by stones, or lands ready for seeding in the rocks. It is very current that the mountainous roads in question reveal important accomplishments of the engineering Inca. Sometimes, the roads were ascending as big perrons; on other occasions they were slipping for tunnels. When the roads had to cross rivers or important abysses, bridges of precarious aspect they were allowing the step.
The Incas had not discovered the wheel, this way that were effecting all his displacements by feet. In order to facilitate the same ones houses were constructing themselves in the principal road links separated by one kilometres, where the wayfarers could rest.

  • Constructions.

The Incas were enjoying themselves with the building construction that they were accommodating to their natal landscape. In the settlements of the high lands, the buildings were getting up with perfectly cut stones. The roofs were formed by a soft cap of straw of more than one meter of thickness. The settlements seem as if they were forming part of the landscape.
The architecture was very formal and simple. The buildings were possessing to regular intervals doors and windows. The decoration to made exception of a few income painted with alive colors, was reserved for the interiors of the constructions. But that simplicity was only to avoid more work. Really, the inca constructions could be considered a miracle of the laboriousness. In many of the walls, integrated by big stones, these they were assembled so carefully that it had been impossible to make slide between the meetings the sharp leaf of a knife. A lot of works realized by the Incas with the stones have survived the earthquakes that managed to destroy entire buildings, constructed from then with materials and more studied methods. When they were suffering some alteration, the stones Incas were separating, but then they were returning to its initial position.

  • The Cities and their Administration.

The Inca cities were very different from ours, with its mixture of shops, offices and homes. Few ones were the persons who were living in the city in strict sense; in his most, the people were living in the settlements of the surroundings and were moving to the city only when it had to settle some matter.
In effect, the city was almost for point a center of government. In her there were remaining all the records relating to the different districts. The local civil servants were visiting the administrative centers of his zone, elaborating report on the condition of the villages and of the public in general. It was possible to need help in epochs of disaster, and the effected supplies were registered for Quipucamayocs, the "countable person" of the Incas.
Every city had a palace, in order to be use by the Inca and the local governor. Near him, thanks to which messages could be transmitted rapidly to all the parts of the empire. There were also stores, in which there were guarded the food and fabrics delivered as taxes. In the neighborhoods of the craftsmen, the goldsmiths, carpenters, weavers and other skilful workers were producing special labors for the Inca and the temples.
An important building was the temple of the Sun, since the Incas were insisting everywhere that the god Sun had to be adored. Near the temple it was situated Acllahuasi, where "Virgins of the Sun” lived out of the sight of the public in general.

  • An Inca Palace and the Acclahuasi.

The Sapa Inca possessed many palaces placed in the important cities of his empire. Such palaces were big complexes of buildings arranged concerning a few square courts. In the interior part there were situated the housings of the Sapa Inca and the
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queen. In the surroundings there were other houses destined for the royal servants. The palace was containing also big foyers and rooms that there were occupying several nobles of other tribes retained as hostages. Some constructions were serving to guard the quipu, the fabrics and the grain, as well as the military equipment.
Aside of the palace he was Acllahuasi, species of convent destined for the “Virgins of the Sun ". Here, Inca was taught to these especially select young women the religion, and equally certain domestic duties, by the mamacunas, a nuns' species of education. The young women were learning to spin and to weave to the perfection, to do exquisite plates and to prepare the alcoholic maize drink that was in use in the religious ceremonies. On having expired thirteen or fourteen years, they were taken to Cuzco on the occasion of the sun’s Festival, and here the Inca was deciding his future. Some of them were turning into his wives or of other members of the family of the Inca, and the remaining ones were devoting themselves to the temples, or were turning into "Mamacunas".

  • The Land.

Sapa Inca ruled over some montains (more territory that the current Peru). This lands were at 3.000 km of the sea level. Here the winds blew over the great jungles of the Amazon. This winds caused rain at raising altitude.
In the coast it didn't rain nothing. The coast lands constituted a desert, in where only there are a few rivers. The coast climate was affected by the cold current of the Humboldt river.
This river flowed throgh the coast, giving place up to fog rises on the desert, cooling it for many months of the year. The Peruvian life is based on the fishing, inside the coastal zones, and on the agriculture and the stockbreding on the plains.

  • The Ocean and The Dessert.

The coasts of Peru are terrible deserts, where in the ancient epochs only there could be cultivated the delotas of the short rivers. In the cold ones it waters down, priovinientes of the south, they find abundant marine lions, seals, whales, dolphins and other a lot of varieties of fish. Of many of the coastal populations crafts were setting sail in the shape of big rafts. Each one was possessing his candle of fabric, but there were also men's rows accommodated in both bands, that they were making advance the craft handling his oars. These coarse crafts were caargadas with big quantities of goods to effect exchanges during his displacements along the coast.


  • Agriculture.

During the Inca Empire, the population of Peru was major that the current one, so the necessary products were a problem. It was necessary to cultivate all the land they have it. Land that were near the streams and rivers were the most fertile. The streams were turned aside from his courses in order that the water was fertilizing the rest of the lands. The majority of the families were cultivating in lands of different levels, for the mountainous hillsides. In the highest parts, potatoes or other products that could resist the cold were cultivated. In the medium zones, the beans and the maize were cultivated. These products were the basic food of the Incas. In the lowest points the Fruit-treesand the pepper were cultivated. By a careful planning of the cultive, the Incas could enjoy food from the different climatic zones of his empire. For the cultive of his lands, the Incas were using of a specific tool for excavating. Habitually, this tool was done by a long handle and by a top of copper or bronze. It was used for moving the land. The boys were armed with slings, which were serving them to throw stones with those that they were frightening to the birds and to the small animals that were eating up his crops.

  • Clothes.

Although the fabrics and ornaments were a lot of variety among the Incas, settling into position in society, the basic style of their clothing was always the same. The men wore a simple robe that reached to the knees. On this tunic, wore a wide, loose layer. They wore sandals or shoes made from plant fibers.
The women wore gowns that came to cover their ankles. Often wearing a wide belt around the waist and a cape. Hairs were placed on a tissue hanging on her neck.
In the highlands dresses were made of wool, but in coastal regions, dresses were made of cotton.

  • Ceramics.

Ceramicswere painted using the polychrome technique portraying numerous motifs including animals, birds, waves, felines and geometric patterns found in the Nazca style of ceramics. Instead of a written lenguage, Ceramics portrayed the very basicscenes of everyday life. It is through these preserved Ceramics that we know what life was like for the ancient South Americans. The most distinctive Inca ceramics objects are the Cuzco bottles or "Aryballos".

  • Medicine.

The Inca made many discoveries in medicine. Anthropologists have discovered evidence which suggests that most skull surgeries performed by Inca surgeons were successful. In pre-Inca times, only one-third of skull surgery patients survived to procedure. However, survial rates rose to 80-90% during the Inca era.

  • Coca.

The Incas revered the coca plant as being sacred or magical. Its leaves were used in moderate amounts to lessen hunger and pain during work, but were mostly used for religious and health purposes. The messengers chewed coca leaves for extra energy to carry on their tasks as runners delivering messages throughout the empire. The coca leaf was also used during surgeries as an anaesthetic.

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