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Ecuador, History

Architectural remains of ancient civilizations dating back thousands of years, and probably related to the Maya civilization of Central America, have been discovered in Ecuador. The present-day city of Quito served as the fortified capital of several Native American groups and is one of three cities in the Americas that antedate the coming of the Europeans. The other two are Mexico City, capital of the Aztec Empire, and Cuzco, Peru, capital of the Inca Empire. Quito was the center of the ancient Native American kingdom of Quito, which was conquered by the Inca Empire in the late 15th century. None of these pre-European civilizations left written records of their cultures. The Inca dominated the Native American tribes of Ecuador and provided the major military obstacles to the early Spanish invaders, who eventually conquered the region in the 16th century.

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