Francisco Pizarro (c. 1475–June 26, 1541) was a Spanish
conquistador, conqueror of the Inca Empire and founder of
the city of Lima.
Francisco Pizarro was born in Trujillo, Extremadura, Spain.
He was an illegitimate son of Gonzalo Pizarro, who as colonel
of infantry afterwards served in Italy under Gonsalvo de
Cordova, and in Navarre, with some distinction.
Pizarro's early years hardly anything is known; but he appears
to have been poorly cared for, and his education was neglected.
Shortly after the news of the discovery of the New World
had reached Spain he was in Seville, he sailed to the New
World in 1509 and took part in various Spanish missions
of exploration and conquest. He is heard of in 1510 as having
taken part in an expedition from Hispaniola to Urab under
Alonso de Ojeda, by whom he was entrusted with the charge
of the unfortunate settlement at San Sebastian.
He accompanied Vasco Núñez
de Balboa (whom he later helped to bring to the executioner's
block) in the discovery of the Pacific; and under Pedro
Arias de Avila he received a repartimento, and became a
cattle-farmer at Panama. Here in 1522 he entered into a
partnership with a priest named Hernando de Luque, and a
soldier named Diego de Almagro, for purposes of exploration
and conquest towards the south. Pizarro, Almagro and Luque
afterwards renewed their compact in a more solemn and explicit
manner, agreeing to conquer and divide equally among themselves
the opulent empire they hoped to reach. Explorations were
then undertaken down the west coast of South America, in
which Pizarro, though left for months with but thirteen
followers on a small island without ship or stores, persisted
till he had coasted as far as about 9 S. and obtained distinct
accounts of the Peruvian Empire.