Since the Inca Empire lacked a written language, the empire's main form of communication and recording came from quipus, ceramics and spoken Quechua, the language the Incas imposed upon the peoples within the empire. The plethora of civilizations in the Andean region provided for a general disunity that the Incas needed to subdue in order to maintain control of the empire.While Quechua had been spoken in the Andean region, like central Peru, for several years prior to the expansion of the Inca civilization, the type of Quechua the Incas imposed was an adaptation from the Kingdom of Cusco (an early form of "Southern Quechua" originally named Qhapaq Runasimi = The great lenguage of the people) of what some historians define as "Proto-Quechua" or Cusco dialect (theoriginal Quechua dialect).
The language imposed by the Incas further diverted from its original phonetic tone as some societies formed their own regional varieties, or slang. The diversity of Quechua at that point and even today does not come as a direct result from the Incas, who are just a part of the reason for Quechua's diversity. The civilizations within the empire that had previously spokenQuechua kept their own variety distinct to the Quechua the Incas spread. Although these dialects of Quechua have a similar linguistic structure, they differ according to the region in which they are spoken. Although most of the societies within the empire implemented Quechua into their lives, the Incas allowed several societies to keep their old languages such as Aymara, which still remains a spokenlanguage in contemporary Bolivia where it is the primary indigenous language and various regions of South America surrounding Bolivia. The linguistic body of the Inca Empire was thus largely varied, but it still remains quite an achievement for the Incas that went even beyond their times as the Spanish imposed the use of Spanish as a method to force their culture upon the indigenous peoples ofSouth America (even though that further increased the diversity of the language).
It is proposed that the actual name of the spoken language of the Incan Empire was called Qhapaq Runasimi and that the Incan ruling elite spoke both Puquina and Qhapaq Runasimi (Quechua). However, Pukina ceased to be used in the 19th century. Under this proposed idea, the root meaning of Quechua was "taken by force,stolen" and a Dominican monk (Pedro Aparicio) mistakenly taught that the Peruvians referred to themselves as Quechuas when it was actually the actions of the Spaniards the people were referring to.
The Roman Catholic Church employed Quechua-Qhapaq Runasimi to evangelize in the Andean region. In some cases, these languages were taught to people who had originally spoken other indigenous languages.Today, Quechua-Qhapaq Runasimi and Aymara remain the most widespread Amerindian languages.
The language of the Incas was the Quichua or Quechua tongue. Originally it was used only in a small area around Cuzco where the Inca dynasty originated, possibly in the tenth or eleventh century. During the next five hundred years, when the Incas succeeded in subduing the native races as far northas Ecuador and as far south as Argentina, they carried the Quechua language with them and insisted in its being learned by the conquered peoples so that it had a wide distribution by the end of the sixteenth century.
Today (1911) the total population of Peru is about seven million. A recent census reports that two and one-half million speak Quechua and two-thirds of these speak no other languages.Although there are many different languages spoken by small forest tribes in the Amazon basin, there are only two aboriginal languages numerically important in the Andes, Quechua and Aymara. In the region around Lake Titicaca and in northern Bolivia the Indians speak Aymara which has a phonetic system and grammar similar to Quechua. Neither of these languages is related in any way to those of...