Talk:Battle of Cajamarca

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Link Removed[edit]

I removed the external link for Capturing of the Inca King as it asked for a login and password which were not supplied. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:11, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

Questioning name of article[edit]

Is the name of this article correct military speaking? There came no order of counter attac from the Inka, and the indians did not raise any weapons against the conquistadors. Shall actions like that be called a battle? As for the numbers of deaths, I only know (=have read) that the Spaniards did get tired by cutting in on the indians that was surrounding Atahualpa without meeting any resistans. As soon as one fell, another took his place, to carry the Inca throne. Xauxa 00:34, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

The matter of whether Atahualpa's royal guard drew daggers is one of speculation, but either way, WikiProject Military history recommends that you avoid "non-neutral terms such as 'attack', 'slaughter', 'massacre.'" In any case, "battle" is probably the more common term. Albrecht 18:25, 19 January 2007 (UTC)
The Imperial Guard were elite soldiers, had they of been present and armed then the Spanish would have suffered tremendous casualties and been defeated. It's very doubtful that any of the Inca attendants had weapons, and if any did it is doubtful they had a chance to raise them before the cannon fire and gunshots started. I would suggest calling it an ambush rather than a battle, that keeps it a neutral word while more accurately portraying the events. OutreachService (talk) 11:37, 30 August 2013 (UTC)
One of the conquistadors who fought there said that "no man would dare call [it] a battle" -- 11:29, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree with the request. Although the speculated and lacking on base ambush of Atahualpa had been true, was the well known and all-way proved Pizarro's ambush the one that finally was done with devastating effects. Cajamarca was anything but a battle, It was a Padaemonium...--Ozomatli-Tepoztli 21:20, 10 October 2007 (UTC)


I have heard he came in with his 80,000 men army unarmed with the strategy to terrified them instead of defeating the Spainard to make himself look even greater. --yeah other references have 80,000 men. not 6,000. sounds like a revisionist edit.

200 men killed 4,000 others in about 30 minutes? That means that each Spaniard killed approximately one person every 1.5 minutes for about half an hour, with arquebuses, swords and pikes. Is this credible? How many men did the cannons kill, and how long would they take to reload? How long would an arquebus take to reload?
There is something deeply fishy here. Did the Incan soldiers meekly submit to being slaughtered? -- ALoan (Talk) 02:03, 16 November 2006 (UTC)
Don´t disturb this people, ALoan. Of course it is very credible. I am Spanish, and I am quite used to tis kind of amazing statistics. One person every 1.5 minutes using basically a sword (the arquebuses used to be used just one time in each battle) is not so much. Dont forget that 1.000 of my ancestors killed about 30-40 millions of indians only in La Hispaniola (we can guess a density of population higher than that of the modern Bangla-Desh, and each Spaniard killing nonetheless 3.000-4.000 indians) making Adolf Hitler look like a silly nun. Also it is quite surprising the obsesion of the conquistadores with the civilians and the children. The first thing that the conquistadores used to do in each battle, is to kill all the children in the zone, and also the women (better if they were pregnant). I wonder why the indian warriors didnt take advantage and killed the Spaniards while the Spaniards were that busy killing the civilians...The History is a mistery...I wonder how there are nowadays so many indians in Latin America complaining and crying, if we are pretty sure that the Spaniards killed all them off...but the most amazing thing is the stupidness of the indians that some authors supposse (and that could be interpretated as pure racism, i really believe that the indians could not be SO idiot). They were 6000 (or even 80.000) but they kept in the square without moving their asses while 100 Spaniards were killing all them off. And for the last one, just to express my deep respect, esteem and admiration towards the conquistadores: Somebody able to kill 45 indians in 30 minutes using a sword is nonetheless than a God. What he deserves is a medal. Cheers guys! Nitramón
That's pretty offensive, Nitramón! There were no Inca soldiers, they were all unarmed attendants. So the Spanish were basically killing civilians. The Spanish themselves wrote that they feared fighting the Inca soldiers because they knew they were outmatched. The statistics do seem extreme, but that's because this article is listed as a battle when in reality the Inca did not fight. OutreachService (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 11:43, 30 August 2013 (UTC)

First off, Atahaulpa didn't speak unflatteringly about the pope, he didnt know any spanish. Valverde handed him a bible and he didn't understand what it was. Handing a book to a person who has no knowledge of written language wouldnt be very effective. The only thing like a written script the Inca had was the quipus, which is kind of like a colorful abacus. And I have always heard that he brought 5k soldiers with him into the plaza, and that the spanish were waiting in ambush for him, who then proceeded to kill most of the bodygaurd and capture the Inca himself without taking a single casualty... The Inca came with an enormous army, but only so many did fit inside Cajamarca. They planned to cross the spaniards with teh weapons they carried concealed but the spaniards beat them. The previous nigth the spaniadrs had traced a plan to sieze initiative the moment the indians started violence. Atahualpa himself give the signal by trowing the Bible. He was overconfident on his own power and proved wrong. The main weapon of the spaniards was the sword.

The statistics are correct. Atahualpa was attacked upon throwing down the bible offered to him. The Spanish attacked them with their large horses and steel weapons which overpowered the Inca soldiers. The cause for the copious slaughter and deceive victory for Pizarro was the fact that the Inca soldiers had inferior weaponry and armor while the Spaniards had steel weapons, steel armor and horses. 168 men slaughtered over 7,000 Inca soldiers however it didn't occur in only 30 minutes. The Spanish were slaughtering them for for several hours. The initial ambush lasted about 30 minutes, however the Spaniards continued to slaughter the wounded into the night. Generally when a armed horseman yielding steel weapons charges into a mass of unprotected soldiers then massive casualties can amount. Wikidudeman (talk) 13:27, 2 October 2007 (UTC)
Anyway that of "no spanish casualties" seems to be a myth... i just readed Gauman Poma's Primer Nveva Corónica i Bven Gobierno and in it's says that five spanish soldiers die, but because of "to be fooling around like indian"(Chapter of the Conquest, p 388).

"De la uanda de los españoles murió cinco personas de su boluntad, por ningún yndio se atreuió de espanto asonbrado. Dizen que tanbién estaua dentro de los yndios muerto los dichos cinco españoles; deue de andar tonteando como yndio, deue de tronpizalle los dichos caualleros."

anyway, only five spanish deads doesn't change the things so much... --Ozomatli-Tepoztli 19:57, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

Apparantly the latest research indicates that Atahualpa never met the Spaniards at all. His entire army was taking part in a celebration and were not only unarmed but not expecting the Spanish. When the Spanish arrived and saw this they immediately attacked along with thousands of their indian allies who hated the Incas. Another error is this sentence:

"Pizarro gathered his officers on the evening of November 15 and outlined a scheme that, in its audacity, recalled memories of Hernán Cortés' exploits in Mexico: he would capture the emperor from within the midst of his own armies."

This "audacious" scheme was standard Spanish tactics for every battle they ever fought. The sentence implies it was something unusual. Wayne (talk) 05:12, 18 April 2008 (UTC)
Any references for these claims? --Victor12 (talk) 12:20, 18 April 2008 (UTC)
Never did just one Inca ever pick up a weapon and defended their emperor. Their duty was to escort him away from the Spanish. The other division of his army was over a mile away, and by the time they could mount any type of offensive, Atahuallpa was already captured. The idea that the cavarly could manage to run through the ranks and kill their generals is what really amounted to the early victories the Spanish had. Once counter-measures were made (trenches, nets, terrain, ambushes, hornet nets, fire, bronze maces, lances, sling stones — Juan Pizarro was killed with a stone to the head and reports have been made that their stones could break iron sword in half from 50 feet away [1]), Pizarro had to recruit native allies more and more often.
Nitramón, Pizarro lied about not having some 40,000 natives at Lima... The Mapuche killed over 100,000 Spanish-European civilians during the Mapuche War: The Chichimeca War was a defeat for the Spanish: Most Historians agree that the Caribbean natives were worked to death, but many more were capitulated from disease — probably some 90-95% (as Jared Diamond writes): The Tlaxcallas could have easily killed Cortes and his men if it were not for fate — they surrounded him onto a hilltop for 2 weeks. Why didn't he "cut through"? The diseases killed the Inca emperor Huayna Capac by 1526 —immediately followed by the next heir, Ninan Cuyuchi.[1]
You guys need to learn about history. I am displeased about this article and intend to clean it up for the greater good. Good day, fellow Internet Heros. InternetHero (talk) 01:26, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

Youtube video[edit]

It's obvious there not many people here but me that has done research, so here: Video. InternetHero (talk) 03:31, 15 August 2008 (UTC)

Here: "The governor then gave the signal to Candia, who began to fire off the guns. At the same time the trumpets were sounded, and the armored Spanish troops, both cavalry and infantry, sallied forth out of their hiding places straight into the mass of unarmed Indians crowding the square, giving the Spanish battle cry, 'Santiago!' W had placed rattles on the horses to terrify the Indians. The booming of the guns, the blowing of the trumpets, and the rattles on the horses threw the Indians into panicked confusion. The Spaniards fell upon them and began to cut them to pieces. The Indians were so filled with fear that they climbed on top of one another, formed mounds, and suffocated each other. Since they were unarmed, they were attacked without danger to any Christian. The cavalry rode them down, killing and wounding, and following in pursuit. The infantry made so good an assault on those that remained that in a short time most of them were put to the sword.". InternetHero (talk) 03:37, 15 August 2008 (UTC)

Edits regarding Inca military[edit]

I've noticed that various edits are made every few weeks to "increase" the military strength of the Incas in the battle. The Incas involved in the battle were Atahualpa's unarmed personal attendants and nobles (who acted as generals when needed). The rest of his 80,000 "army" who stayed behind were armed civilians who took no part. The Incas had no regular army. When needed, peasants were conscripted for campaigns or battle. These peasants supplied their own weapons and had no training. The Incas relied on overwhelming an enemy with their numbers rather than military might as we know it. Please do not edit to include the 80,000 in the battle or edit to infer that those who did take part were warriors. Wayne (talk) 06:22, 20 August 2008 (UTC)

I agree. People need to stop going in and editing the same thing over and over. This article is supposed to be about the "battle". The body of Incas camped outside the city had nothing to do with this battle. Ignore them. It's like doing an article about the Battle of Stalingrad and including "3 million troops stationed elsewhere". Mention it in the body of the article, but in the quick statistical breakdown in the sidebar, I think it doesn't have a place.Pete71 (talk) 19:09, 25 September 2008 (UTC)


I saw somebody using Felipe Poma de Ayala's sources for the casualties, first he was not there, second he was no there and third he was not there, so how can we cite somebody who was NOT present at the battle? Here are better sources by Kim MacQuarrie from his book the last days of the incas :

  • "Miraculously, in the space of just a few hours, the Spaniards had killed or wounded perhaps six or seven thousands native (some of these of course, had simply been trampled to death), while they themselves hadn't lost a single man"

And how do we explain the one Spaniard wounded?

  • " Spaniard tried to stab Atahualpa with his knife to kill him. But Francisco Pizarro parried the blow and in doing so the Spaniard trying to kill Atahualpa wounded the governor [F. Pizarro] on the hand"--EuroHistoryTeacher (talk) 20:50, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
    • More sources for the reluctant User:WLRoss :

[2],[3],[4],[5],[], anymore?--EuroHistoryTeacher (talk) 22:44, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Checking sources finds that there is very little agreement. Some say no Spaniards were killed and many of those that say 0 such as National Geographic also say that ALL 7,000 Inca's were killed so we need to look at the sources used by these otherwise reliable sources which includes the book you want to push. The Nueva Crónica y Buen Gobierno (also used by the Spanish language Wikipedia page) was written in 1615 and doesn't say what the Inca casualties were, only that "they were killed like ants" and also "an unknown number killed themselves (trampled) trying to escape over a wall the weight of their bodies pushed over". It does however say that the Spanish lost five men: "The Spanish force lost five in the horror and these few casualties were not caused by the Indians, who had at no time dared to attack the formidable strangers,....(a sentence I cannot translate follows)...where the Indians killed the aforesaid five Spanish". It's possible they may have been trampled rather than killed by weapons. Later books don't mention these men but say the only Spanish casualty was Pizarro, this may be because the five were not actually killed by the Inca but the fact remains they were killed during the battle. For the Inca casualties we have a compilation of interviews with Pizarro's men and Indian survivors by Pedro De Cieza de Leūn written in Peru within 10 years of the events it describes. This book is the earliest written account of the battle. It describes Inca casualties but goes not mention any Spanish, not even injuries such as Pizzaro's that your book does. "And the Inca, where was he? More than two thousand Indians died and many were wounded"......the Spanish then attacked the Inca outside the plaza but it began raining "giving the Indians relief"....The Spanish then told the Inca to come and see that Atahualpa was not injured, "Thus, more than five thousand Indians without weapons were collected that night". As these are original sources they should be more authoritative than books written 500 years later that had to use them as their own sources. Wayne (talk) 06:51, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
I would point out that Kim MacQuarrie was also NOT THERE so I can also ask "how can you cite somebody who was NOT present at the battle?". Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala may not have seen the battle but he was born between 1532-1550 near Cajarmaca and lived when some older Inca still remembered it. Wayne (talk) 07:16, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
To User:Wayne : because MacQuarrie's book actually cites the Spaniards and notaries that were present at the battle, what Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala did was basically to collect oral stories, also he maybe have been born between 1532-1550 but he didn't send his book to Spain to be printed until he was 80 years old! so that means his book basically records stuff from 17th century Peru, in a time that most (if not all) combatants at Cajamarca were dead. Also how did the 5 Spaniards died?? Poma de Ayala is just making some stuff up, like in some of his drawings he depicted the wrong people doing the wrong acts at the time of the Spanish conquest of Peru, I have more accurate and reliable sources that support my views.--EuroHistoryTeacher (talk) 22:34, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Also Poma de Ayala said 5 spaniards died of "boluntad" this means of will , so did 5 Spaniards died by their own will???? did they suicide? the only casualty was Francisco Pizarro who got a wound to his hand by blocking a dagger of his friend from inflicting damage to Atahualpa--EuroHistoryTeacher (talk) 22:45, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Please read Wikipedia polies. If there is a dispute about a new edit you need to get consensus for your version before adding do not keep replacing the old version. Another policy is verifiability comes before truth. If the reliable source says it, we use it unless other reliable sources claim the first source is lying. You need to find sources specifically claiming Poma de Ayala is "making some stuff up" in regards to Spanish dead. It doesn't matter that MacQuarrie's book "actually cites the Spaniards and notaries that were present at the battle". Because his source doesn't mention Spanish casualties doesn't mean there were none. That is why I used Cieza de Leūn only for the Inca casualties, his eyewitness sources (probably the same as MacQuarrie's) don't mention a single Spaniard but neither do they mention there were none. They can't use the arguement that no mention = no dead. Make a RFC then we can see which version should be used. Wayne (talk) 07:56, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

You have to be kidding me. I believe you are the one who cannot understand wiki policies. More books (as I have shown) contradict Poma de Ayala and also, MacQuarrie's book does say that there were no spanish fatalities but only one wounded. So I have more sources to override Poma de Ayala's.--EuroHistoryTeacher (talk) 00:52, 5 February 2009 (UTC)

EuroHistoryTeacher, if you are still around, I am reasonably familiar with the English language scholarly literature on Spanish casualties on Cajamarca and while "zero" dead is usually cited, there is still some controversy/debate among professional historians; i.e. there does not seem to be any consensus on this; we should reflect that slight uncertainty in the article. I have changed the figure to "0–5" with a citation from Tucker (2010), who acknowledges that the figure usually stated = zero Conquistador deaths, but also mentions "some sources" saying "five". I have not removed the MacQuarrie citation, but removed the lengthy quote from MacQuarrie, which duplicated the article content. However, please note that the MacQuarrie quote requires formalities such as a date and publisher. Grant | Talk 04:05, 21 September 2012 (UTC)


Seems pretty one sided for a battle. For a battle, wouldn't there have to be two sides fighting? It just seems to be one military force slaughtering unarmed people. --Harizotoh9 (talk) 17:51, 28 June 2014 (UTC)


breaking down a fifteen-foot length of wall in the process+aftrmath2short(inkaempire! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:44, 10 April 2016 (UTC)

  1. ^ Diamond, Jared, Guns, Germs and Steel, W.W. Norton & Co., 1997 (pg. 76) ISBN 0-393-03891-2