IV. The Early Modern Period, 1500–1800 > H. Latin America, 1500–1800 > 4. Peru and the West Coast, 1522–1581
  The Encyclopedia of World History.  2001.
4. Peru and the West Coast, 1522–1581
Continuing exploration southward from Panama, Pascual de Andagoya (c. 1495–1548) advanced into Biru (Peru), where he learned of the rich and powerful Inca Empire. His ill health forced him to abandon plans of conquest.  1
Francisco Pizarro (1470–1541), under Ávila's authority and in association with Diego de Almagro (1475–1538) and Hernando de Luque, a priest, undertook the conquest of Peru. An initial expedition reached the San Juan River and a second the Gulf of Guayaquil and Tumbes, where they encountered more evidence of the Inca Empire.  2
Pizarro went to Spain and concluded a capitulation with the crown by which he obtained the right of discovery and conquest of Peru for a distance of 200 leagues south of the Gulf of Guayaquil and the office of adelantado, governor and captain-general. Almagro was assigned command of the fortress of Tumbes, and Luque was named its bishop.  3
Returning to Panama, accompanied by his brothers Gonzalo (c. 1505–48) and Hernando and a small group of recruits, Pizarro organized a military expedition and sailed for the conquest. He consolidated his position at Tumbes and founded San Miguel de Piura, then gathered more recruits and moved into the interior. He reached Cajamarca, where the Inca Atahualpa had camped with his retinue.  4
1532, Nov. 16
Pizarro seized Atahualpa by surprise. While prisoner, Atahualpa ordered the assassination of his rival, his half-brother Huáscar.  5
Despite Atahualpa's having paid an enormous ransom in gold and silver, Pizarro ordered his execution. Pizarro, with the help of Almagro, advanced toward Cusco, the Inca capital. Manco, brother of Huáscar, viewed the Spaniards as allies and they installed him as Inca. Pizarro distributed lands and encomiendas among his troops.  6
Sebastián de Belalcázar (1495–1550) defeated Atahualpa's lieutenants and established control in the region of Quito. Pedro de Alvarado, governor of Guatemala, came with an expedition of 500 men to seize Quito. He abandoned his claims in exchange for monetary compensation.  7
1535, Jan. 18
Pizarro, having left Cusco, founded Lima, which became the capital of the later viceroyalty of Peru. Almagro led Spanish troops and Inca warriors to conquer Chile. In Cusco, Pizarro's brothers attacked Manco to obtain more riches. Manco rebelled and conducted a lengthy but unsuccessful siege of Cusco (1535–36). The Inca leader retreated to Vilcabamba, a region that became his kingdom.  8
Civil war between Pizarro and Almagro. Having failed in his attempt to conquer Chile, Almagro clashed with Pizarro regarding jurisdiction over the city of Cusco. Almagro occupied the city but was defeated and executed. Spaniards gained control over the region surrounding Lake Titicaca (1538) and founded the city of La Plata (today's Sucre) in 1539. Settlements at Chachapoyas (1538) and León de Huánuco (1539) were built on the northeastern frontier.  9
Partisans of Almagro assassinated Pizarro and set up Diego de Almagro the Younger, Almagro's mestizo son, as governor. Cristóbal Vaca de Castro, the royal judge, deposed him. Almagro died in battle in Chupas (1542).  10
Gonzalo Pizarro, as governor of Quito, led an expedition across the Andes and reached the upper Amazon.  11
The Encyclopedia of World History, Sixth edition. Peter N. Stearns, general editor. Copyright © 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Maps by Mary Reilly, copyright 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.