Inca gold statue

A photograph of a stylized human head that was made of gold by the pre-conquest Inca. The Inca ruled Ecuador late in their history. It was not until the early 1500s that all of Ecuador came under control of the powerful Inca. Within forty years the Spanish had replaced the Inca as the dominant ruling power. Through both conquests Ecuadorian Indians were able to retain much of their own culture while adopting some of the cultural, religious, and linguistic practices of their rulers.

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