Sweat of the Sun, Tears of the Moon: A Chronicle of an Incan Treasure

Sweat of the Sun, Tears of the Moon: A Chronicle of an Incan Treasure

by Peter Lourie
     
 

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Eight billion dollars’ worth of Inca gold and silver are rumored to be hidden in an unmapped region of the Andes. This is the captivating story of that fabled treasure and the centuries-old spell it has cast on many, including a young American student, Peter Lourie.

While completing anthropological fieldwork in Ecuador, Lourie heard the legend of Atahualpa

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Overview


Eight billion dollars’ worth of Inca gold and silver are rumored to be hidden in an unmapped region of the Andes. This is the captivating story of that fabled treasure and the centuries-old spell it has cast on many, including a young American student, Peter Lourie.

While completing anthropological fieldwork in Ecuador, Lourie heard the legend of Atahualpa’s ransom. The Incas gathered seven-hundred tons of gold (Sweat of the Sun) and silver (Tears of the Moon) to purchase the freedom of their king, Atahualpa, from Pizarro and his conquistadors. After the Inca ruler’s murder, the treasure vanished into the forsaken Llanganati range of the Andes.

Lourie abandoned his graduate school ambitions to search for Atahualpa’s ransom. His quest for clues and his journey into the heart of the Andes is an absorbing and exciting detective story. Lourie’s account is also unforgettable for its revelations about the lives and characters of seasoned treasure hunters, the obsessed few lured by the siren song of legendary gold.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The lost treasure of Atahualpa, the Inca king murdered by Pizarro in 1534, continues to lure gold hunters to the distant, almost impassable mountains of Ecuador, where, legend says, it is hidden. Lourie, a graduate student in anthropology, succumbed to the legend and set off on an expedition to separate myth from fact. His journal captures the quixotic path he followed, often with laughable unreadiness and the self-delusion that propelled many fellow-travelers he encountered en route. In the end, ironically, Lourie concluded that he had no desire whatsoever to disturb the Incas' gold. His journal is a captivating, if meandering adventure. (Apr.)
Library Journal
The Llanganati is a remote, high Andean area of Ecuador that has long been rumored to contain a fabulous gold collection hidden by the Incas when the Spanish conquistadors swept through. Over the years it has attracted a colorful variety of treasure hunters, some of whom the author got to know in the early 1980s. Lourie decided to make the expedition himself, but not in search of the treasure so much as the experience of the journey. In doing so, his first book is a rich tapestry of characters of several nationalitites that often reads like fiction. The title is a reference to the Incan imagery of gold and silver, respectively. The only major drawback is an absence of maps, yet this is ultimately a fine treasure-hunting book.--Harold M. Otness, Southern Oregon State Coll. Lib., Ashland

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780803279803
Publisher:
University of Nebraska Press
Publication date:
08/28/1998
Pages:
316
Sales rank:
1,160,868
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 6.00(h) x 0.66(d)

Meet the Author


Peter Lourie is a lecturer in creative writing at Middlebury College. His many books include River of Mountains: A Canoe Journey Down the Hudson and In the Path of Lewis and Clark: Traveling the Missouri.

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