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(both: ko͞o`skō), city (1993 pop. 97,466), alt. 11,207 ft (3,416 m), capital of Cuzco dept., S Peru, at the confluence of the Huatanay and Tullamayo rivers. Its population is predominantly of indigenous descent. It is a transportation hub and a trading center for agricultural produce and for woolen textiles produced in the Cuzco mills. It also has a large tourist industry, based on its proximity to many ancient Inca sites. According to legend, Cuzco was founded by Manco CapacManco Capac
, legendary founder of the Inca dynasty of Peru. According to the most frequently told story, four brothers, Manco Capac, Ayar Anca, Ayar Cachi, and Ayar Uchu, and their four sisters, Mama Ocllo, Mama Huaco, Mama Cura (or Ipacura), and Mama Raua, lived at
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, first of the Inca rulers. The city had massive palaces and temples (most notably the Temple of the Sun, now the site of a Dominican convent), which were lavishly decorated with gold medallions and ornaments. When Francisco PizarroPizarro, Francisco
, c.1476–1541, Spanish conquistador, conqueror of Peru. Born in Trujillo, he was an illegitimate son of a Spanish gentleman and as a child was an illiterate swineherd.
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 entered the city in 1533, it was plundered; and on its ruins the conquerors and their descendants built the colonial city, using the ancient walls (many of which are still visible) as foundations for new buildings. An earthquake in 1650 destroyed much of the city, and many of the city's notable Baroque buildings were built in subsequent years. The cathedral and the churches of the Society of Jesus and of La Merced are the most notable of Cuzco's many churches. A severe earthquake in 1950 destroyed much of the city, but most of the historic buildings have been restored. The National Univ. of Cuzco is in the city, as are many art, history, and other museums; nearby are the ruins of the Inca fortress SacsahuamánSacsahuamán
, stronghold of the Incas outside Cuzco, Peru. Built in the 15th cent., Sacsahuamán is an imposing terraced fortress more than one third of a mile long; it is a masterpiece of stone construction. Cyclopean blocks (one is 38 ft/11.6 m long; 18 ft/5.
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(also Cusco), a city in Peru and capital of the department of Cuzco. Situated in the mountains at an elevation of more than 3,400 m, in the valley of the Huatanay River (Amazon Basin). Population, 108,900 (1970). The Quechua Indians constitute a significant proportion of the population. Railroad station. The principal industries are the production of cotton and wool fabrics and leather goods and of sugar, beer, chocolate, and other food products; handicrafts are also produced. The city has a university (founded in 1692) and two museums. It is a tourist center.

According to legend, Cuzco was founded by the first mythical ruler of the Incas, Manco Capac, in the 11th century (much earlier according to archaeological data). The city subsequently became the capital of a vast Inca state: Tawantin-suyu. In 1533, Spanish conquistadors headed by F. Pizarro seized the Inca state and looted Cuzco, destroying its rich culture.

After a series of fires and earthquakes (the largest in 1650), Cuzco was rebuilt in the 17th and 18th centuries. From 1836 to 1838 it was the capital of the South Peruvian state. Workers’ uprisings and major strikes flared up frequently in Cuzco. In 1959 a general strike against the policies of the oligarchy grew into a popular revolt, which was savagely crushed by the reactionaries.

Cuzco has retained traces of the rectangular plan and the directions of streets of Inca times. The remains of Inca stone structures (the Colcampata palace and the main part of the Temple of the Sun—Coricancha) were used by the Spaniards as foundations for new buildings. In the 16th through 18th centuries, buildings in the baroque style were erected: massive, richly decorated stone churches (such as the cathedral, 1560–1654, designed by F. Becerra) and monasteries and convents (La Compañia, Santo Domingo, and the Convent of La Merced) and one-or two-story dwellings with courtyard arcades. Beginning in 1945, hotels, motion-picture theaters, and a scientific center were built. The Museum of the Institute of Archaeology contains a collection of pre-Columbian and colonial art. The Inca fortified settlements of Sacsahuamán, Machu Picchu, Pisac, and others are located near Cuzco.


Kropp, M. Cuzco, Window on Peru. New York-London, 1956.
Pardo, L. Historia y arqueología del Cuzco, vols. 1–2. [Callao, 1956.]


, Cusco
a city in S central Peru: former capital of the Inca Empire, with extensive Inca remains; university (1692). Pop.: 307 000 (2005 est.)
References in periodicals archive ?
In Cuzco, a group of Irish backpackers from Killarney reveal that a Dutch student in their hostel had been asked to carry 7kg of cocaine to Spain for PS3000.
Lima, Cuzco and Machu Picchu with Iguazu Falls and Rio de Janeiro - From $5,579 per person.
Historical documents report the early eighteenth-century arrival of an epidemic, thought to be of smallpox, which wiped out nearly the entire indigenous population of the Patacancha Valley in 1719, and killed 600 people in a single day in Cuzco in 1720 (de Esquivel y Navia 1749 [1980]; Glave & Remy 1983).
The new airport will cover an area of 40,000 square meters and will replace the existing Alejandro Velasco Astete air terminal, which services tourists visiting Cuzco and the nearby Inca citadel of Machu Picchu.
Picchu ruins They claim it was in Cuzco, surrounded by huge statues of Inca kings, that they were handed 11kg of cocaine and ordered to wrap it in their suitcases ready for the journey back.
They were brought to the capital city of Cuzco for special ceremonies and then sacrificed, sometimes in distant locations.
He explained that they had to get out of Machu Picchu because Huw, a diabetic, needed to get to Cuzco to get a supply of insulin.
In Durston's words, "colonial pastoral translation is at the root of the persisting myth of the primacy of Cuzco Quechua, and this myth has arguably had very negative repercussions for the linguistic selfesteem of the vast majority of Quechua speakers" (49).
3000-1000 BC) open-air site in the Cuzco highlands generates expectations that transcend the emphasis on architectural monumentality and social complexity during this period on the north-central coast of Peru.
The final option is to travel by train from Cuzco to Aguas Calientes, the closest town to Machu Picchu.
According to a report from Cuzco in 1610 that describes the almost monthlong celebration of the beatification of Ignatius of Loyola, various parishes marched in turn to the main square carrying symbols and chanting songs of their Inca forebears now adapted to honor Ignatius.
Dating to around 1765, the painting is attributed to Ignacio Chacon -- an artist active from about 1745 to 1775 in Cuzco, Peru.