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21. Cuzco: A Journey To The Ancient
22. Aztecas, Incas, Y Mayas (DK Eyewitness
23. Handbook to Life in the Ancient
24. The Incas (See Through History)
25. Machu Picchu: Exploring an Ancient
26. Inca Civilization (Cover-to-Cover
27. The Inca City Of Cuzco (Places
28. Stencils The Incas and Their Ancestors:
29. Tiwanaku: Ancestors of the Inca
30. Los Incas/ The Incas (Mirando
31. Everyday Life of the Aztecs, Incas
32. The Inca: Activities and Crafts
33. You Wouldn't Want to Be an Inca
34. Empire of the Incas (Great Empires
35. The Illustrated History of the
36. Inca Empire (Time Travel Guides
37. Step Into: The Inca World
38. The Secret of the Incas: Myth,
39. The Incas: New Perpectives
40. The Incas (Worlds of the Past)

21. Cuzco: A Journey To The Ancient Capital Of Peru; With An Account Of The History, Language, Literature And Antiquities Of The Incas
by Clements Robert Markham
Hardcover: 436 Pages (2007-07-25)
list price: US$51.95 -- used & new: US$35.74
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Asin: 0548252130
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This scarce antiquarian book is included in our special Legacy Reprint Series. In the interest of creating a more extensive selection of rare historical book reprints, we have chosen to reproduce this title even though it may possibly have occasional imperfections such as missing and blurred pages, missing text, poor pictures, markings, dark backgrounds and other reproduction issues beyond our control. Because this work is culturally important, we have made it available as a part of our commitment to protecting, preserving and promoting the world's literature. ... Read more

22. Aztecas, Incas, Y Mayas (DK Eyewitness Books) (Spanish Edition)
by Elizabeth Baquedano
Hardcover: 64 Pages (2004-04-19)
list price: US$15.99 -- used & new: US$13.50
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Asin: 0756604109
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Stunning full-color photographs of weapons and tools, sculpture, metalwork, and ceramics offer a unique 'eyewitness' view of these rich and complex civilizations.

Favorite Eyewitness titles are now available in Spanish-language editions for American readers. With the help of special language consultants, each book has been expertly translated with U.S. Spanish speakers in mind, offering native speakers and language students alike the opportunity to experience the truly unique resource that is Eyewitness. ... Read more

23. Handbook to Life in the Ancient Inca World
by Ananda Cohen Suarez, Jeremy James George
 Hardcover: Pages (2011-02-28)
list price: US$70.00 -- used & new: US$51.86
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Asin: 0816074496
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24. The Incas (See Through History)
by Tim Wood
Hardcover: 48 Pages (1996-11-01)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$92.39
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Asin: 0670870374
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Young readers can discover the secrets of the Inca civilization and peel back the double-page acetates to look inside a typical Inca house, a temple to the sun god, an emperor's palace, and a messenger's roadside way station. H. ... Read more

25. Machu Picchu: Exploring an Ancient Sacred Center (WORLD HERITAGE AND MONUMENT SERIES)
by Johan Reinhard
Paperback: 200 Pages (2007-10-03)
list price: US$39.95 -- used & new: US$37.75
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Asin: 1931745447
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Machu Picchu is one of the world's most famous archaeological sites, yet it remains a mystery. Even the most basic questions have long remained unanswered: What was its meaning and why was it built in such a difficult location? This full-color book examines Machu Picchu from the perspectives of sacred landscape and archaeoastronomy. Using information gathered from historical, archaeological, and ethnographical sources, the author demonstrates that the site is situated in the center of sacred mountains and is also associated with a sacred river, which is in turn symbolically linked with the sun's passage. Taken together, these features have meant that Machu Picchu formed a cosmological, hydrological and sacred geographical center for a vast region. Key architectural features at Machu Picchu and nearby sites formed parts of this ceremonial center, where economic, political and religious factors combined to lead to their construction in one of the most rugged areas of Peru. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Machu Picchu Homework
This book is essential homework for the person preparing to visit the Machu Picchu Sanctuary in Peru.You can benefit from learning how to visit the ruin in a self-guided fashion and from cross-checking your guides info to authenticate what she/he are telling you.It also has sufficient info to help you understand what Machu Picchu is all about, the role of Hiram Bingham, the local people who led him to the site in 1911 and it helps set the stage for reading other books like MacQuarrie's The Last Days of the Incas.One should supplement this guide with the International Travel Map, Cuzco Region - Machu Picchu - Peru 1:110,000 ... Read more

26. Inca Civilization (Cover-to-Cover Informational Books: Ancient Civil)
by Shirley Jordan
Hardcover: 67 Pages (2002-08)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$14.84
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Asin: 0780799283
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27. The Inca City Of Cuzco (Places in History)
by Nick Saunders
Paperback: 48 Pages (2005-01)
list price: US$14.05 -- used & new: US$9.56
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Asin: 0836858190
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28. Stencils The Incas and Their Ancestors: Ancient & Living Cultures Series: Grades 3+: Teacher Resource (Ancient and Living Cultures)
by Bartok, Mira Bartók, Ronan, Christine
Paperback: 32 Pages (1996-11-08)
list price: US$9.95 -- used & new: US$3.25
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Asin: 067336156X
Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars
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Children discover and explore the rich heritage of ancient cultures around the world through fascinating myths, legends, festivals, and stories of the culture. Detailed maps and vivid illustrations show how various people lived and what they accomplished. Each book in this popular series contains five easy-to-do art projects- complete with unique punch-out stencils for making many of the traditional arts and crafts still produced today. Ages 8+ ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

2-0 out of 5 stars stencils somewhat useless
I like the information and ideas in this book, but the stencils are very difficult to punch out.I'm an adult and I am unable to free the stencils from the backgrounds without bending and tearing them- with the aid of an exacto knife even!I imagine children would find this very frustrating. ... Read more

29. Tiwanaku: Ancestors of the Inca
Hardcover: 257 Pages (2004-12-01)
list price: US$40.00 -- used & new: US$158.41
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Asin: 0803249217
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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By the shores of Lake Titicaca, the largest body of water in the South American highland, rose the city of Tiwanaku. Its megalithic structures were constructed between AD 100 and 300. By 500 Tiwanaku had become the capital of an expanding empire in the Andes that endured until approximately AD 1000, when extended drought caused water levels to fall and agriculture to fail. After European colonization many of the buildings were raided for their stone, which was used to construct churches, rail stations, and houses. Less than a day’s trip from La Paz, Bolivia, Tiwanaku remains one of the most impressive archeological sites in South America.

Despite its fame and its economic, political, and artistic importance to such later peoples as the Incas, the Tiwanaku civilization has never been the subject of a comprehensive international art exhibition and accompanying catalog—until now. Tiwanaku introduces American audiences to the striking artwork and fascinating rituals of this highland culture through approximately one hundred works of art and cultural treasures.

The range of media is unparalleled among ancient South American civilizations: large-scale stone sculptures, spectacular works in gold and silver, masterfully crafted ceramics, monumental architecture, gold and silver jewelry, and decoratively carved wood, bone, and stone objects. Of special note are the textiles, remarkably preserved by the dry climate of Tiwanaku’s outposts in Chile and Peru. These finely crafted and richly decorated objects assembled from collections around the world evoke a vivid and comprehensive picture of elite life five hundred to one thousand years before the Inca Empire.

This lavishly illustrated, full-color catalog features insightful scholarly essays introducing the general reader to the culture and historical context of the Tiwanaku.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars Documentation around a museum exhibition
This book is a collection of photographs and some background text of an exhibition of the same title.The photographs are good.The information behind them is academic and dry.So beyond getting the book for some interesting photographs you would not need to including this book in things related to either Tiwanaku or the Inca.In fact the book makes a tepid case of this link between Tiwanaku and the Inca.The Inca themselves identified with this area and claimed (as the current conquerors) the divine descendency from the Tiwanaku.But the Inca also strongly inherited their culture from the Wari, Moche, Chavin, and others.

If you are interested in Tiwanaku then 'the' prime resource is Ancient Tiwanaku (Case Studies in Early Societies).

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the few books you'll find on the Tiwanaku - scholarly exhibition catalogue
This is one of the few books to be found on the Tiwanaku people of Lake Titicaca.These are a people who pre-dated the Inca and for close to 800 years dominated the highlands in what is now Peru and Bolivia.

Today their most visible remains is the gate of the sun and semi sunken temple on the shore of Lake Titicaca. They left no written records and in the immediate area of Tiwanaku city itself their remains have been poorly excavated over the years.Aside from their ruins perhaps their most stunning legacy has been their textiles.

This book displays a number of gorgeous textiles that were produced by the Tiwanaku and Wari peoples - these textiles, most of them today in private collections, on display here for the first time in one place, are one of the main reasons to get this book.

The text surrounding the textiles, snuff trays and sculptures produced in Tiwanaku and Wari illustrated in this book is scholarly.It draws on what little we have been able to find out about these people to show us a culture that was both savage, tightly integrated with nature and a people with high artistic sensibilities.If you want to know more about pre-Columbian cultures that extend beyond the Inca this book is one you should get for your collection about a little discussed people.If you enjoy pre-Columbian textiles this book should not be missed, if only for its colour illustrations.
... Read more

30. Los Incas/ The Incas (Mirando La Historia/ Looking at History) (Spanish Edition)
by Tim Wood
Hardcover: 48 Pages (2006-10-30)
list price: US$28.95 -- used & new: US$21.99
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Asin: 9501112772
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31. Everyday Life of the Aztecs, Incas & Mayans (Uncovering History)
by Neil Morris, Luisa Della Porta, Andrea Ricciardi
 Paperback: 46 Pages (2003-08)
list price: US$31.35 -- used & new: US$199.95
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Asin: 1583402535
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32. The Inca: Activities and Crafts from a Mysterious Land (Secrets of Ancient Cultures)
by Arlette N. Braman
Paperback: 128 Pages (2003-11-12)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$5.00
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Asin: 0471219800
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Discover the ancient Inca culture with these fun games and activities!

Make an Inca tunic. Prepare a quinoa snack. Create a royal headdress. You’ll have a great time exploring the cultural traditions of these fascinating people as you learn to write an Inca poem, sculpt your own clay portrait in the shape of an Inca jug, and test your bluffing skills as you play Perudo.

This book is filled with activities and projects that will show you how the ancient Inca people lived and played, as well as how they managed to create an empire that extended nearly 3,000 miles! You’ll learn about the bravery of Inca warriors as you construct a war shield. You’ll discover how the Inca created beautiful music with panpipes and dance bells–and you’ll make them yourself!You’ll get to prepare a tasty Inca dish called Andean stew. Plus, you’ll find lots of amazing Inca facts on topics ranging from history and religion to language, metalworking, and art. So get ready for lots of fun as you discover the ancient secrets of The Inca. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars CLASS LOVED the CRAFTS & INCAhistory made easier
Crafts are great, easy to do!Easy to read book, easy directions.Drawing are vivid and helpful.

During Open School night my son's teacher stated that some cultures are hard to teach to a 2nd grade class.I offered my services when ever she needed help or a helpful idea. Matthew came home and said Ms. Rayes needed help with INCAS.Book arrived fast.A day later my son came home with a note.TEACHER LOVES THE BOOK, she raved about it!She has since passed her book onto other 2nd grade teachers who have since ordered their own copies. ... Read more

33. You Wouldn't Want to Be an Inca Mummy!: A One-Way Journey You'd Rather Not Make (You Wouldn't Want to...)
by Colin Hynson
Paperback: 32 Pages (2007-09)
list price: US$9.95 -- used & new: US$5.25
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Asin: 0531139263
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Hanging out at the palace with the number one Inca has lots of benefits, but you don't want to get too chummy with Sapa Inca.If you do, you'll be expected to follow him everywhere - including his next life! ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Just what kids like!
I teach kindergarten through 5th grade Spanish and I wanted some books about the Incas, Mayans, and Aztecs that my students would find interesting. This book, and others like it in the same series, fit the bill perfectly. I just read a few excerpts to get them started; soon they were clamoring to read it themselves. It's best geared for 3rd through 5th grade. It's humorous, but gruesome. The writing is in that busy cartoon style like the Magic School Bus that I personally don't enjoy much, but that kids seem to love. It's better for reading independently than as a group read-aloud. ... Read more

34. Empire of the Incas (Great Empires of the Past)
by Barbara A. Somervil
Library Binding: 152 Pages (2009-09-30)
list price: US$35.00 -- used & new: US$16.42
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Asin: 1604131586
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35. The Illustrated History of the Incas: The extraordinary story of the lost world of the Andes, chroniclingthe ancient civilizations of the Paracas, Chavin, ... 240 color photographs, fine art paintings
by David Jones
Paperback: 128 Pages (2008-03-18)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$6.71
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Asin: 1844763692
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The extraordinary story of the lost world of the Andes, chronicling the ancient civilizations of the Paracas, Chavin, Nazca and Moche and other tribes and cultures of ancient south America ... Read more

36. Inca Empire (Time Travel Guides (Express))
by Jane Bingham
Paperback: 64 Pages (2007-12-15)
list price: US$9.99 -- used & new: US$7.92
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Asin: 1410930475
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A differentiated parallel series using simplified text and an attractive layout with a clear sequence to make it easier for less confident readers to follow. Designed for 11-15 year old pupils with a reading age of 8, it incorporates a lowered text level that allows struggling readers to access and understand the curriculum basics. It can be used in conjunction with Freestyle version. ... Read more

37. Step Into: The Inca World
by Philip Steele
Paperback: 64 Pages (2006-12-25)
list price: US$12.99 -- used & new: US$5.00
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Asin: 1844763048
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Step back in time to discover the spectacular world of the Incas and their ancestors. Successors to the Chimu gold workers and the Tiwanaku lake people, the Incas ruled the most spectacular empire South America has ever seen. The land of the Sun God was bright with many treasures houses of gold, the most fabulous clothes and huge stone buildings. This book uncovers the secrets of the mummy bundles, the mystery of the giant lines in the Nazca desert and the intricate rope bridges high in the Andes Mountains. Projects actively involve the reader in understanding the past: make a reed boat that really floats, create an Inca drum and design a tunic fit for an emperor. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars fun and succinct
Great overview of Inca life in ways that young readers can understand. The illustrations and photos of Inca art are compelling, and the craft projects are inviting. Photos of modern people carrying out ancient festivals such as Inti Raymi are fun, too. Well researched and accurate.

5-0 out of 5 stars Geat activities for children and adults
As a 7th grade world history teacher, I found this book to be wonderful. My students were able to take their knowledge of the Incas and translate it into a variety of projects that gave them a hands-on experience to complement their learning. Projects such as a war shield and sacrificial knife were easy enough for 4-5th grade levels while weaving a llama, medicine bags, and straw rafts proved to be a challenge for my more advanced students. Each project gives information about how and why the Incas used their tools and provides step by step instructions on how to complete the project. A very fun activity book for students and adults alike. There is also a whole series of the Step Into books that deals with Aztecs and Mayas, the Romans, etc. ... Read more

38. The Secret of the Incas: Myth, Astronomy, and the War Against Time
by William Sullivan
Paperback: 464 Pages (1997-05-20)
list price: US$23.00 -- used & new: US$17.60
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Asin: 0517888513
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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In the tradition of Fingerprints of the Gods (Crown, 1995; 65,000 sold) and Stonehenge Decoded, this revolutionary new interpretation of the mythology of the Incas offers an astonishing "history of prehistory".

At its peak, the Inca empire was the largest on Earth. Yet in the year 1532, it was conquered by fewer than 200 Spanish adventurers. How could this happen? Approaching the answer clue by clue, William Sullivan decodes the myths of the Incas to reveal that they embody an astoundingly precise record of astronomical events.

In the 15th century, the Inca priest-astronomers read the sky and saw signs of an apocalypse. So the Incas took a desperate gamble: If events in the heavens could influence those on Earth, perhaps the reverse was true. In The Secret of the Incas, Sullivan shows that the Inca rituals of warfare and human sacrifice were nothing less than an attempt to stop time, to forestall the cataclysm that would sweep away their world. This is a work of rare erudition and imagination that will reshape our understanding of the past. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (12)

1-0 out of 5 stars One of the worst books ever written
If you want to know something about the Incas, forget this book. He spends time on the Aztecs, the Greeks even the Romans, but other than spelling out Inca words with no translation for them, forget it.

There are extensive endnotes, some that last more than a page which are equally obscure.The author is very insistent about never getting to the point and avoiding logical conclusions.

If you have insomnia, you might want to invest in this waste of space.

2-0 out of 5 stars A rambling, biased, tome
The author examines Inka and Mayan myths using a variety of tools, and many, many words.To the first myth he applies the theories in Hamlets Mill to explain why the Foxes tail is black and pinpoint AD 650 as the rise of warfare in the Andes.From here it's mostly downhill.

The author then drags us through his own internal mental processes of doubt and disbelief as he looks at other myths.Through this long process he forcefully and unnecessarily brings up many biases such as there is no proof that a matriarchal society ever existed anywhere in the world.Period.He returns to the subject of matriarchal disbelief many times calling it a big 'red flag'.He leads us through his admitted internal stubborness of this and many other issues.

Although I believe the author is correct in his assocation with the Fox's tail being black being a celestial event ala Hamlets Mills, he spends so many words looking at other myths from a plethora of angles that you are forced into a single conclusion.That no one outside of a culture has any clue at what a given myth really means.The entire book is like running naked through the forest yelling out conclusions about myths which rightly are interpreted only by their creators.

At one point in the discussion of 'finding father' he claims that the Andean man lacked a true heart with the ability to love while he was primarily a hunter within a matrilinear horticultural society.Andean man only gained his heart and full ability to love when the culture changed to fully agriculture and he had to stay at home with the wife and kids.Give me a break.To any Andean person alive this is rubbish.What kinds of conclusions and judgements can we make living outside the cultural box.It is this kind of subtle talk that is a jaguars hair short of prejudice and racism.

Ultimately, although if you like reading from the 'academic' view, this book does lead you through enough alleys to make you feel like the author knows what he is talking about, ultimately it fails from it's biases and from being rooted in a combination of sexism and western scientific dogma.

If the author wanted to really understand the Andean mind then he would have had to undergo a process of breaking open his head and surrendering to the mystery of myth reather than trying to break open the myths using the rational mind.Myth is mythic.A view which ultimately escapes the author.It might be worth it to take this book on if you have a university paper to write.It will certainly scintillate your professor being of the same vocabulary and possibly biases.But if you are looking to expanding your understanding of the Inka or Andean cultures from a spiritual or mythic perspective then look elsewhere.Get yourself to South America, Peru, spend time with the shamans.Then you can learn what myth is really about.And how it lives today.

5-0 out of 5 stars Werner Herzog: Make this Film
This book is every bit as entertaining as the run-of-the-mill speculative/paranormal UFO-from-Atlantis books with which it is unfortunately cross-listed on Amazon,but the author's scholarly rigor makes it much more satisfying.Sullivan supports his fascinatingly unconventional conclusions with evidence, sound reasoning, and a bit of self-critical skepticism.

But the real charm of this book is the fact that he pursued such a crazy theory in the first place.Behind the scholarship is a "guy-with-a-crazy-dream" human-interest story (e.g. Fitzcarraldo, Field of Dreams).This would make perfect film material for Werner Herzog.To hear the author tell it, he spent several years in the academic wilderness (as well as the Andean wilderness), chasing after the (wholly-unsupported) hypothesis that Incan myth encodes both astronomy and Andean history.To his advisers, this must have sounded a lot like writing a grant to study the pyramids of Mars.For a lesser intellect, this would have been a career-killer and the reader gets the sense that Sullivan knew it.One of the best parts of the book recounts Sullivan's meeting with Owen Gingerich and "the Vatican Astronomer" at the Harvard planetarium.He's clearly terrified that these eminent astronomers will think he's a kook.But when they conclude: "he's done his homework," Sullivan breathes a sigh of relief.

A word of warning: get the hardback.I got the paperback edition and the binding was defective and the first 50 pages fell out the first time I read them.

5-0 out of 5 stars Cosmic Relations Incas and Stars
The Secret of the Incas : Myth, Astronomy,
and the War Against Time
Three Rivers Press; Reprint edition (May 20, 1997)
Language: English
ISBN: 0517888513


'The Secret of the Incas: Myth, Astronomy and the War Against Time' is an incredible collection of research by William Sullivan on ancient myths and their relationship to animals, ancient cultures and astronomical bodies aligned with world events. This book is delightful in knowledge and majorly intense. The following paper was written as an introduction to his work. I am always pleased to bring only the higest quality
research for the reader's enjoyment and education.

Dr. Colette M. Dowell
Circular Times


By William Sullivan

In 1969 a book was published which figured to revolutionize the study of human history. This was Hamlet's Mill: An Essay on Myth and the Frame of Time, written by two historians of science, Giorgio de Santillana of MIT and Hertha von Dechend of Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt. The startling hypothesis of this book was that myth, on one level, constitutes nothing less than a technical language created to encrypt and pass on very sophisticated astronomical observations related to the precession of the equinoxes.

The precession is a gyroscopic-like wobble of the earth's axis of rotation requiring 26,000 years to complete a single cycle. Two aspects of this work - which the authors themselves styled a "first reconnaissance" into the subject - were pure dynamite. First, if the ideas in the book were true, then those myths which are astronomically encrypted are self-dating, that is they carry a record of a moment in precessional time that is at least as accurate as a radio carbon date. This view renders obsolete the concept of "prehistory" which is defined as "before the written record."

Second the authors found that a very precise and idiosyncratically expressed religious cosmology, linking world ages to the gain or loss (due to precessional motion) of "access" to the Milky Way at solstices and equinoxes is found in cultures all over the world. The clear implication of these ideas was that an unexplored, and highly dramatic history of the human race awaits engagement by students of the human legacy.

I was so bowled over by these ideas when I first encountered them - in 1974 - that I eventually realized I had to know if they were true. The very first thing I learned was that there is no university in world where you can go to learn anything whatsoever about these ideas. The academy, for reasons of its own, has chosen to ignore the profound implications of this work for going on 25 years now.

My own book, The Secret of the Incas: Myth, Astronomy and the War Against Time (Crown 1996), is an account of my own twenty year journey of exploration into the astronomy of myth, and I am happy to report that this odyssey was not undertaken in vain.

The Gateway God of Tiahuanaco Courtesy: 'Secret of the Incas' copyright 1996 William Sullivan

I am now certain that Hamlet's Mill will, sooner or later, revolutionize our understanding of our past and even who we are as human beings. I have taken rather a long time in setting up a brief discussion of my book because I want to make clear that what I found out about the Incas came as a complete surprise. I didn't set out in search of esoteric prophecies or experiments in geomancy on the scale of empire. I had initially chosen the Incas to study because they had no writing and hence relied largely on oral tradition - myth - for the transmission of information across time.

Furthermore, it seemed to me that if the cosmology described in Hamlet's Mill really was operative in the southern Andes, then truly we must be looking at a world-wide phenomenon. From the beginning of my research, however, I was constantly made aware of the strangeness of the events surrounding the formation and destruction of the Inca Empire.

Few people realize that this empire was less than a century old when it was utterly destroyed by a handful of Spanish conquistadors. In 1532 a Spanish expeditionary force of 175 hardened adventurers, under the command of Francisco Pizarro, ascended the Andean massif in search of a fabled Empire of Gold. Unknown to them as they approached two great Inca armies were engaged in the climactic battle of a great civil war of succession. When, on November 15, the Spanish force reached the ridgeline overlooking the valley of Cajamarca the victorious Inca king Atahuallpa was completing the third day of a fast of thanksgiving for his victory. What the Spanish saw was an encamped army of 40,000 men. That night the Spanish made out their wills and said confession. Yet on the morrow, given the advantage of surprise and horses, they would engage this army, capture the Inca and kill or wound 10,000 men.

Only years later would I realize that the legends that the Inca Empire was born under the shadow of a prophecy were all true. About the year 1432 the father of the first Inca Emperor foretold that after five generations of Kings the Empire and its religion would be utterly destroyed. The fifth and last king to rule the Empire unmolested was Huayna Capac, father of Atahuallpa.

In my research I first found that Inca myths did indeed encrypt precessional information. The first stories which I came to understand concerned a "flood" which destroyed the entire "world" but which was survived by a peasant along with his family and flocks who ascended the "highest mountain in the world" to weather the storm. Applying the "tool kit" of Hamlet's Mill, I regarded mythical animals as representing the constellations named after them; topographic references as analogues for positions of the sun on the celestial sphere; and mythical "gods" as planets.

As a result I learned that these flood myths yielded a date of 650 A.D., which corresponds precisely to the latest archaeological findings in the Andes that a repressive, secular and militaristic empire, known as Wari, suddenly conquered the greater portion of the Andean Highlands beginning in the early 7th Century.

The astronomical, or precessional event which took place at this time was the failure (for the first time in 800 years) of the Milky Way to be visible at sunrise on June solstice. In cosmological terms, this meant that the gates of the land of the gods had slammed shut. Years later I would find the myth - the foundation document of the Inca Empire, really - that formed the theoretical basis for the Inca prophecy.

In 1432 the Inca priest astronomers could see that a predictable precessional event loomed in the future, only this time it was the gates to the land of the dead which were about to slam shut. It was this predictable event which gave rise to prophecy. Since the foundations of Andean religion rested upon ritual interchange with the ancestors at December solstice, the closing of the "gate," if taken literally, would indeed bode the end of everything.

Finally, I learned that the Inca Empire was conceived and formed for the sole purpose of stopping this event from happening. The Inca Empire was an experiment in sympathetic magic, designed to stop time in the sense of precessional motion. The primary means for achieving this end were the ritual uses of warfare and of human sacrifice. Since each tribe in the Empire had from the most ancient times considered itself descended from a particular star or constellation, the Incas offered a yearly sacrifice of a child from every tribe in order to send emissaries back to the stars with a single message: "May the earth not turn over, may the sun and moon stay young, may there be peace." a plea to the creator to keep open the bridgehead to tradition that spanned the Milky Way.

The creator's response was a terrible one, for he sent the Spanish, who arrived precisely on time. The Incas were never able to regain the edge which they gave up initially on that first day in Cajamarca, and so the prophecy came true. Now, this is a strange story, a story so powerful in fact that it threatens to swamp what I think is the real significance of the research I have done. The Incas were a test case.

By applying the tools of Hamlet's Mill to a single culture, and in depth, the history of a so-called "prehistoric" people has been rewritten. Along the way I found that the Incas shared with peoples all over the world access to a peculiar meta-language - the technical language of myth - which is so distinctive and so idiosyncratic that no mechanism other than seaborne contact appears adequate to explain its wide diffusion. The implications of this finding are staggering. It means that we are all heirs a world-wide civilization of great time-depth of which we have virtually no notion. The histories of the individual peoples who participated in this great tradition lie gathering dust on dark library shelves, classified as "myths."

Meanwhile the academy continues to turn its back on this, the heritage of the human race, a system of thought which gave rise simultaneously to the human scientific tradition and to human religion as well. Indeed all the world's great religions, including Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Shinto, Hinduism, Shamanism and Native American Great Spirit religion, make frequent, respectful reference to this ancient system of thought. From Newgrange in Ireland (ca. 3200 B.C.) to Angkor Wat, from Tiahuanaco to Babylon, from Giza to Hawaii, we live in the ruins of a civilization whose very existence we only dimly suspect.

As the precessional clock ticks onward - a clock whose rhythms the ancients were convinced gave clues to the rhythms of human history - perhaps it is past time that we humans reclaim our history, which is our birthright, and with it perhaps reclaim some of the more sacred aspects of our human nature.

by William Sullivan


William Sullivan is a native New Englander. Educated at Harvard College, he was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Rajasthan India, and later studied the History of Religion under J.G Bennett at Sherborne House in Gloucestershire, England. In 1988, after several years of fieldwork in Peru and Bolivia, he received a doctorate in American Indian Studies from the University of St. Andrews, Scotland. He lives in central Massachusetts with his wife Penelope and their children Phoebe and Jonathan. There are bears in the backyard.

DR. Colette M. Dowell

2-0 out of 5 stars Poor book if you are not an expert in mythology
If you are not educated in mythology and the like, skip this book. I thought it would describe the history of the Inca Empire and mention mythology while doing so, but this book is MAINLY about the mythology itself. Only for experts in the field if you ask me, not for the general public. Written in a boring style. ... Read more

39. The Incas: New Perpectives
by Gordon F. McEwan
Paperback: 192 Pages (2008-09-17)
list price: US$21.95 -- used & new: US$13.57
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Asin: 0393333019
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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A revealing portrait of the ancientAndean empirefrom its earliestdevelopment to its finalcapitulation to Pizarro.Defying many of the supposed rules ofcivilization building and lacking the advantages of a written language, hard metals, the wheel, or draft animals, the Incas forged one of thegreatest imperial states in history. In recentyears, researchers have employed new tools toget to the heart of this mysterious culture.Drawing on archaeology, anthropology, andethnohistory, The Incas provides themost up-to-date interpretations of the culture,religion, politics, economics, and daily lifeavailable. Readers will learn how the Incasdiscovered medicines still in use and keptrecords using knotted cords; how they createdmasterful highways and stone bridges; and howthe inhabitants of seemingly unfarmable landscame to give the world potatoes, beans, corn,squashes, tomatoes, avocados, peanuts, andpeppers. 63 illustrations ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

3-0 out of 5 stars Could have been organized more effectively
All the basic information for an introduction to the Incas is there, which is good, but it is presented in a much jumbled manner. For instance, you get an overview of the Incas (on chapter 1), then the story of the conquest first (on chapter 3), followed by a sketch of a long history of the Andes up to and including the Incas (on the same chapter 3), then a survey of Inca rulers (on chapter 4, overlapping with parts of what's been said already). Some of the specific issues (the Inca highway system, for instance) discussed in the first chapters come back in the rest of the book, sometimes with slight alterations (and no explanation as to the slight differences; compare the number of kilometers recorded on pages 3 and 115), sometimes with word-for-word repetitions of sentences used in the first chapters. You get the sense that the author was at odds to try to assemble and condense a wealth of information on the Incas.

On a different note, the book looks bulkier than it should: it really ends on page 200, and the following 69 pages are a (useful) glossary, an annotated bibliography, and an index; with changes to spacing and font size, the number of those pages could have been drastically reduced. Despite the lengthy bibliography at the end, the end-of-chapter bibliographies are not significant at all (with the exception of chapter 10), and long passages refer solely to work from the forties (which is curious for a book presenting "New Perspectives").

5-0 out of 5 stars Review by Greg Hobbs of The Incas
Review of Gordon F. McEwan, The Incas, New Perspectives (ABC-CLIO, Inc, Santa Barbara 2006).

By Justice Greg Hobbs, Colorado Supreme Court, Denver.

Here's a book about the Incas written by a scholar who has spent twenty-six years working with Peruvian archeologists in the Cusco Valley to unearth the secrets of Pikillacta and Chokepukio.
The archeology of these two sites reveals a two-thousand year history of the Andean people's adaptation to a stunning and often harsh environment.
The Incas built their civilization on the cultural foundations of the Wari, Tiwanaku, and Pukara civilizations of the Lake Titcaca region, dating back as early as 200 B.C.
As McEwan documented in a 2002 National Geographic article, the Wari (500-1100 A.D.) operated Pikillacta as a ceremonial and administrative center. (Virginia Morell, "Empires Across The Andes," National Geographic at 123 (June 2002)).
At Pikillacta, you can see portions of the aqueduct the Wari built to convey water a great distance from the surrounding mountains.You can also see beehive-looking structures in which the Wari housed mummies of Andean ancestors.The nearby Chokepukio excavations have revealed a temple containing burials and artifacts documenting Inca religious rituals.
McEwan's important highly readable book about the Incas explains that the Andean people revered their ancestors.In life, the mummies had been political authorities.Their preservation was important to the continuation of land tenure and water rights in local communities."Mummified ancestors were believed to bridge the gap between the natural and supernatural worlds . . . The mummy's most important function was to intervene in the spirit world in order to maintain the flow and abundance of water."
The Incas believed that springs and rivers harbored living spirits.They spread the ashes of fine-woven cloth and llamas upon the waters as a sacrifice.They built magnificent ceremonial and drinking water fountains at such places as Tipon (high above the Cusco Valley) and Machu Picchu (high above the Urubamba River).They harnessed stream and spring water for irrigation on ingeniously-constructed terraces that still hang in seemingly impossible ravines and mountain sides like Tipon, Moray, Pisac, and Machu Picchu.
The Incas built many granaries to feed the people in times of scarcity.These were carefully situated on slopes in dry areas with good drainage.They contained dried corn, quinoa, freeze-dried potatoes, beans, other vegetables, and seeds.The Incas also built large storehouses for holding cloth, tents, agricultural tools, and weapons."The capacity of the storage system was staggering . . . Careful records were kept on the knotted cords of the quipu that could tell an Inca official at any time exactly how much of what commodity was stored in each of the storehouses."
When a new region was incorporated into the Inca empire, its lands were carefully surveyed and catalogued.The lands were divided into three sections, one part in service to the state religion, one part for the emperor, and the remaining part for sustenance of the local population.Herds of llamas and alpacas, and the pasturage for them, were also divided into thirds on the same basis.
The Incas exacted a labor tax for producing food and cloth and building the roads, agricultural terraces, water systems, palaces, temples, and administrative centers.Great care was taken to equally distribute the labor tax burden.Only a few men were taken out of each administrative unit for labor elsewhere. By keeping sufficient labor at home, the administrative units of the empire "could maintain agricultural output and not disrupt the economy. . . The underlying ideology was that of a reciprocal exchange.The state provided for the worker in exchange for the labor the worker gave the state."
McEwan explains that, when the ruling Inca died, his lands were reserved to him as a separate estate maintained by a cadre of attendants.This meant that the new Inca had to conquer more lands to obtain wealth for himself.As the empire expanded, those who were the greatest warriors among the ruling class became the Inca in succession.They often spent long periods of time on the frontier away from the capitol of Cusco.This led to unrest and rival factions that played directly into the Spanish conquest.
This book is highly readable because McEwan progresses from an overview of Inca civilization into chapters that deal with the environmental setting; historical setting; origins, growth and decline of Inca civilization; economic structure of the Inca state; social organization and structure; political structure; religion and ideology; material culture; and intellectual accomplishments.
The chapters contain many interesting subheadings, photographs, and illustrations.McEwan carefully cites the bibliography of Andean cultural research with endnotes to the chapters.He finishes the book with an assessment of major controversies and future directions in Inca studies.
McEwan knows from on-the-ground work what he writes about.In 2002, he was kind enough to lead me through the Pikillacta and Chokepukio sites.At the invitation of the Peruvian crew he hires from the local community, I witnessed a pago.On page 144 of his book, there's a photograph of a shaman preparing the about-to-be-burned offering to Pachamama (mother earth).The bundle I saw burned contained a lama fetus, an octopus tentacle, grain, candy, cookies, bits of yarn, coca leaves, and sea shells.I will never forget the sight and smell of smoke from this offering curling into the highlands.
As McEwan so aptly relates in this book, the Andean people still revere the earth, the mountains, the waters, and the sky.

5-0 out of 5 stars Concise and Complete
Hooray for Gordon McEwan and his fine book, "The Incas!"He tells us about the Inca and their cultural heritage in down-to-earth, easy-to-read language.McEwan covers the subject in 201 concise pages that provide a level of depth and breadth that should appeal to scholars, but contain enough background to orient someone new to the topic.

McEwan's extensive glossary is a terrific reference piece, and the index is very complete.Probably what I like the most about "The Incas," however, it its careful, scientific approach; the information is dependably well researched and devoid of speculation.

I would recommend "The Inca" to anyone interested in the Inca Empire, arm-chair travellers, and persons planning to travel to any part of the former Inca Empire, including Machu Picchu.The book will double your understanding, and consequently, your enjoyment, of the Inca culture.

... Read more

40. The Incas (Worlds of the Past)
by Sarita Kendall
 Library Binding: 64 Pages (1992-05)
list price: US$21.00 -- used & new: US$599.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0027501604
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Surveys the civilization, history, and culture of the Incas, including studies of their government, religion, family life, agriculture, and architecture. ... Read more

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