Translated and Edited with Notes and an Introductionby Sir Clements Markham, K.C.B. President of the Hakluyt Society.
here were many descendants of each of these ayllus living near Cuzco in 1572, and the leading members were examined on oath; so that Sarmiento had opportunities of obtaining accurate information which no other writer possessed. For the correct versions of the early traditions, and for historical facts and the chronological order of events, Sarmiento is the best authority.
But no one can supersede the honest and impartial old soldier, Pedro de Cieza de Leon, as regards the charm of his style and the confidence to be placed in his opinions; nor the Inca Garcilasso de la Vega as regards his reminiscences and his fascinating love for his people. Molina and Yamqui Pachacuti give much fuller details respecting the ceremonial festivals and religious beliefs. Polo de Ondegardo and Santillana supply much fuller and more reliable information respecting the laws and administration of the Incas. It is in the historical narrative and the correct order of events that Sarmiento, owing to his exceptional mean