The New International Encyclopædia/Aymara
AYMARA, ī'mȧ-rä'. The name commonly applied to a confederacy or group of semi-civilized tribes centring in the high plateau about Lake Titicaca, in Peru and Bolivia, and numbering now, including mixed bloods, more than half a million. At the time of the discovery they were subject to the Incas, but there is considerable ground for the opinion held by some writers that they are themselves the originators of the Inca (Quichua) civilization. Physically they are distinguished for their great chest development, due to the rarefied air which they breathe. The mysterious cyclopean ruins of Tiahuanaco are within their territory, and are probably of Aymara origin. The language appears to constitute a distinct linguistic stock, although it shows strong Quichuan correspondences.