I. The mythical ancestor of the incas of Peru. (See Peru, and Quichuas).
Inca Of Peru, killed in 1544. He was the second son of the inca Huayna Capac, the conqueror of Quito, who died shortly before the arrival of Pizarro, dividing his kingdom between his legitimate successor Huascar and a younger son Atahuallpa. The latter, after having made war upon Huascar and put him to death, was himself captured and executed in 1533 by Pizarro, who then set up Toparca, a brother of his victim, as a nominal sovereign, under whose name the conquerors might themselves direct the government. Toparca died within the year, and shortly afterward Manco Capac appeared in the Spanish camp to announce his pretensions to the throne and claim Pizarro's protection. The conqueror received him cordially, and made it his first care after the taking of Cuzco to place him on the throne. After in vain petitioning for power to exercise the sovereignty, he withdrew secretly from Cuzco, but was overtaken, brought back, and imprisoned. Again escaping, he roused the whole nation to arms, and appeared before Cuzco in February, 1536, with a host of Indians who covered the surrounding hills.
He destroyed a large part of the city by fire, and reduced the Spaniards to extremities; but after the siege had lasted more than five months, he had to draw off most of his followers on account of the scarcity of food, and retired to the fortress of Tambo in the valley of the Yucay. Defeated here by Almagro, and forsaken by most of his warriors, he fled to the Andes, and for several years remained a terror to the Spaniards, hovering over their towns, lying in ambush on the highways, sallying forth as occasion offered at the head of a few followers, always eluding pursuit in the wilds of the Cordilleras, and in the event of civil war among the foreigners throwing his weight into the weaker scale in order to prolong their contests. Pizarro attempted to negotiate with him, and sent him rich presents by an African slave. The negro was murdered on the way by some of Manco's men; and Pizarro in revenge caused one of the monarch's wives to be tied naked to a tree scourged, and shot to death with arrows. The Spanish rulers who succeeded Pizarro, down to Blasco Nunez, bore orders from the crown to conciliate the formidable chief, but he refused all offers of accommodation.
He was killed by a party of Spaniards belonging to the younger Almagro's faction, who on the defeat of their leader had taken refuge in the Peruvian camp. They were in turn massacred by the Indians.