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Viracocha Inca and his fire stone (Read 4539 times)
Rockman
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Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Apr 25th, 2012 at 6:02pm
 
From the book Second part of the Chronicle of Peru by Pedro Cieza de León. Itīs written in archaic Spanish, Iīll try my best to translate.


CHAPTER XXXIX.- How Viracocha Inca hurled a fire stone with his sling to Caitomarca and how he was revered.

After he sent the messenger, Viracocha Inca ordered his people to raise the royal banner and approach Caitomarca. Walking down the road, he arrived to a river where the troops stopped to rest; at that moment the messenger arrived, who told how the people of Caitamarca had mocked them and that they didnīt fear the Inca. As this was understood, Viracocha Inca, with great determination, climbed to his royal litter and ordered to march hastily, and so they did, until they reached the bank of a mighty river of powerful current, which I belive must be the river Yucay. And the Inca made camp and wanted to fight his enemies on the opposite bank of the river; but the river was so powerful, the plans couldnīt be carried out. The people from Caitomarca arrived at the the river bank and began throwing sling stones to the royal troops, and they started shouting and taunting, as it is the strange custom of these people in their fights, how little time they allow their mouths to rest.

For two days, the Inca was at the river, unable to cross it. And they say that Viracocha Inca placed a small rock on a large pyre and when it was very hot, wrapped it in some material, so it may torch wherever it landed, he placed it in a sling with gold threads which he used to throw rocks when he felt like it, and with great strength, he hurled it to the town of Caitomarca; the projectile landed on the roof of a house covered in dry straw and it burned in such a manner in the night, that the Indians asked one another what had happened and who had torched the house. An old woman said: "This I tell you, I donīt belive someone here torched the house, I believe it came from the sky, for I saw a burning stone, which came from above and it hit the house, leaving it the way you see now.

And when the chiefs and nobles with the elders of the town heard this, being great diviners and sorceress, believed that the stone had been send by the hand of god to punish them for not obeying the Inca. And without waiting for the oracle or making any sacrifices, they crossed the the rivers in their rafts, carrying gifts for the Inca; and when they were in their presence, asked for peace, offering their people and lands, as did their allies.        
           
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Preserving the sling, mankindīs original Magnum. Rookie slingers are modern superheroes: Never far away from trouble. Rockman sling tutorial: http://slinging.org/index.php?page=how-to-make-a-rockman-sling---bruno-tosso
 
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Fundibularius
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #1 - Apr 26th, 2012 at 12:06am
 
Thanks for sharing. Good find with a number of interesting details.
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Ferrugo numquam dormit.&&(Nigellus Iuvenis)&&&&

Noch weiz ich an im mere daz mir ist bekant
einen lintrachen  slouch des heledes hant
do badet er in dem blvote  des ist der helt gemeit
von also vester hvte  daz in nie wafen sit versneit.
 
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Mauro Fiorentini
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #2 - Apr 26th, 2012 at 7:10am
 
This is most interesting, Bruno, thanks for sharing.
It's very important for my anthropological researches!
Thank you,
Mauro.
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Like! Smiley https://www.facebook.com/Arte-Picena-238289793027749/timeline/
Greetings,
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Sparrow
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #3 - Apr 26th, 2012 at 8:20am
 
Hmm, guess I missed the 'how to make a gold thread sling' tutorial.  Wink

Interesting story, especially how the sling is treated as both a legitimate weapon of war by the Caitomarca and simply as a hobby by the Inca king. It very much reflects the discussion in the 'What do you use sling for' thread in the general discussion forum http://slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1335311462
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Bill Skinner
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #4 - Apr 27th, 2012 at 12:00am
 
Thank you for the story.  And also, thank you for translating it so that it is readable in todays terms.  I like the stories and legends of the native peoples of the Americas, unfortunately, there aren't very many that have survived to the present.
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Curious Aardvark
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #5 - Apr 27th, 2012 at 3:54pm
 
there is  a lot of truth in that tale.

That is exactly how incendiary sling stones were used.

And we've always wondered about how they stopped the slings from scorching. gold threads would certainly help. And the inca were master goldsmiths.

I suspect there is a lot more truth to that part of the tale than you might think.  

So whoever's dealing with historical and allegorical sling tales for the book - make sure you include rockmans translations of these inca tales Smiley
they fit right alongside the balearic tales of slinging at bread to eat.

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Do All things with Honour and Generosity: Regret Nothing, Envy None, Apologise Seldom and Bow your head to No One  - works for me Smiley
 
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slingbadger
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #6 - Apr 29th, 2012 at 8:51am
 
In the book 1491, Charles Mann gives us the firestone scenario.

The Peruvians used heated stones to attack a village. The stones were heated to red hot, and wrapped in pitch soaked cotton.
They were slung over the defensive walls. The cotton would catch fire in mid air.
  In 1536, this method was also used on the Spanish occupied city of Qosqo. It was a weeks long barrage of fireball that left the city burned to the ground, and the Spanish cowering in fear.
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The greatest of all the accomplishments of 20th cent. science has been the discovery of human ignorance  The main difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits.-Einstein   I'm getting psychic as I get older. Or is that psychotic?
 
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David Morningstar
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #7 - Apr 29th, 2012 at 9:05am
 

I have seen hot stone slinging done on a TV show about South America.

The sling pouch was lowered onto the ground. A folded cotton pad like a handkerchief was placed over the pouch. A second man used green wood forked sticks to lift a stone out of a fire and place it on the pad which started smoking immediately. The sling was lifted and slung normally. The pad flew only a short distance,the stone flew normally. The pad protected the sling from getting scorched but did not fly with the stone or catch fire.

A hot stone was then dropped into a pile of thatching, this smoked furiously and soon burst into flames.
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teenageslinger
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Reply #8 - Sep 22nd, 2012 at 9:29pm
 
In history class today the history textbook said that the Incans used slings and could sling 30 yards Huh

Obviously 30 yardw was a gross understatement but i was wondering what style of sling,  and slinging style they used.

And anyother information would be nice
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Re: Viracocha Inca and his fire stone
Reply #9 - Sep 22nd, 2012 at 11:41pm
 
I spliced you into an account of Incan slingers. When you're ready to learn more, try using the forum search. On google you can also type "site:slinging.org [insert keyword]." Inca, Peru, South America, Columbia, etc. will give you a lot of relevent results.
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Pikåru wrote on Nov 19th, 2013 at 6:59pm:
Massi - WTF? It's called a sling. You use it to throw rocks farther and faster than you could otherwise. That's all. 
~Engineers like to solve problems. If there are no problems handily avialable, they will create their own problems.~
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Rockman
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Re: Incan Slingers
Reply #10 - Oct 3rd, 2012 at 8:55am
 
teenageslinger wrote on Sep 22nd, 2012 at 9:29pm:
In history class today the history textbook said that the Incans used slings and could sling 30 yards Huh

Obviously 30 yardw was a gross understatement but i was wondering what style of sling,  and slinging style they used.

And anyother information would be nice


The best known Peruvian sling looks like this http://www.seekyee.com/Slings/gallery/peruvian1.htm made from llama or alpaca wool. I have a couple myself which I got at a souvenir shop.
I believe that the 30 yard quoted refers to the effective range of the weapon, the Incas took the high ground whenever they could and started their battles with a shower of slings stones, darts and arrows. Thanks to the steep and tall geography of the Andes, the range would be in the hundreds of meters. But for a person to be able to reliably hit someone with the right mix of power/accuracy 30 yards seem correct.    
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Preserving the sling, mankindīs original Magnum. Rookie slingers are modern superheroes: Never far away from trouble. Rockman sling tutorial: http://slinging.org/index.php?page=how-to-make-a-rockman-sling---bruno-tosso
 
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