Sunday, February 17, 2013

Lost Inca Treasure


Its not the mythical city of gold that draws treasure seekers to the rugged Llanganates mountain range in Ecuador, some say there is a vast Inca hoard hidden from Spanish conquistadors there.

The Inca Empire in South America in the early 15th century was quickly giving way to European invaders. Atahualpa was an Inca king who, after warring with his half-brother, Huáscar, for control of the empire, was captured at his palace in Cajamarca in modern-day Peru by Spanish commander Francisco Pizarro.




Pizarro agreed to release Atahualpa in return for a roomful of gold, but the Spaniard later reneged on the deal. He had the Inca king put to death on August 29, 1533 before the last and largest part of the ransom had been delivered. Instead, the story goes, the gold was buried in a secret mountain cave.
"We're dealing with the frontier land between fact and fiction," Honigsbaum admitted. "We know Atahualpa's gold existed because it's recorded in the Spanish chronicle, and it's recorded that a large convoy of gold was on its way from Ecuador. After that, the best and most persistent stories revolve around the Llanganates."




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