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(kähämär`kä), city (1993 pop. 123,195), capital of Cajamarca prov., N Peru. An important commercial center, Cajamarca is situated at an altitude of c.9,000 ft (2,740 m) and has a cool, dry climate. Most of the population is indigenous. Grains and alfalfa as well as dairy cattle are raised in the region, and gold, silver, and copper come from nearby mines. Textiles, headwear, and leather products are manufactured. 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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 captured the Inca ruler AtahualpaAtahualpa
, d. 1533, favorite son of Huayna Capac, Inca of Peru. At his father's death (1525) he received the kingdom of Quito while his half-brother, the legitimate heir Huáscar, inherited the rest of the Inca empire.
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 in 1532 at Cajamarca. Inca ruins and nearby thermal springs attract many tourists. National Technical Univ. is located in Cajamarca.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a city in northern Peru. Population, approximately 40, 000. Located on the slopes of the Cordillera Occidental mountain range, at an elevation of more than 2, 800 m.

Cajamarca is a highway junction and the trading center of an agricultural region (sugarcane, cotton, tobacco, rice, dairy cattle-breeding). It has enterprises producing powdered milk, butter, cheese, and leather goods and is a center for the production of handmade straw hats.

Cajamarca was one of the important cities of the Inca empire until the beginning of the 16th century. It was under Spanish rule from the 16th to the 19th century. The architecture of Cajamarca flourished in the first half of the 18th century. The rich deep carvings, resembling a plush carpet, give a special magnificence to Cajamarca’s churches (the cathedral of Santa Catalina, 1682-1762; San Antonio, 1699-1737; and El Belen, 1699-1746). The two-story clay houses have tile roofs that project outward a great distance and portals with carved pilasters and pediments.


Gridilla, A. Cajamarca y sus monumentos. Cajamarca, 1939.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.