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Archaeology and Language in the Andes$
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Paul Heggarty and David Beresford-Jones

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780197265031

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197265031.001.0001

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Indicators of Possible Driving Forces for the Spread of Quechua and Aymara Reflected in the Archaeology of Cuzco

Indicators of Possible Driving Forces for the Spread of Quechua and Aymara Reflected in the Archaeology of Cuzco

Chapter:
(p.246) (p.247) 10 Indicators of Possible Driving Forces for the Spread of Quechua and Aymara Reflected in the Archaeology of Cuzco
Source:
Archaeology and Language in the Andes
Author(s):

GORDON F. McEWAN

Publisher:
British Academy
DOI:10.5871/bacad/9780197265031.003.0010

Linguistic studies have shown that the traditional idea that the expansion of the Inca Empire was the driving force behind the spread of all Quechua cannot be correct. Across much of its distribution, Quechua has far greater time-depth than can be accounted for by the short-lived Inca Empire. Linguistics likewise suggests that Aymara spread not from the south into Cuzco in the late Pre-Inca period, but also from an origin to the north. Alternative explanations must be sought for the expansion of these language families in the culture history of the Andes. Archaeological studies over the past two decades now provide a broad, generally agreed-upon outline of the cultural history of the Cuzco region. This chapter applies those findings to examine alternative possibilities for the driving forces that spread Quechua and Aymara, offering a clearer cross-disciplinary view of Andean prehistory.

Keywords:   Inca Empire, Quecha, Aymara, language families, Cuzco, cultural history

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