Cusco, Ciudad Puma

by / Monday, 30 January 2017 / Published in Travel Blog
cusco main square

Cusco, Ciudad Puma; Cusco had the figure of a majestic puma that lay on the dry bed of the old Inkill Lake.

Its stone head rested on the hill of the hawks and was formed by the fortress of Saccsayhuaman. His fangs sharpened with a spear point made the fierce relief of the first wall of the square and his bright eyes were the towers covered with gold plates that shone in the sun.

On its gigantic back, the Tullumayu, called the “River of bones”, runs until today, because it wetted the vertebrae of the God, whose plumed claws closed over another millennial river, the Saphi “root of springs.” Its tail ended in a street that still retains its old Indian name, PUMAQ CHUPAN (Tail of the Puma).

The city itself was thus an idol, and the inhabitants of Tawantinsuyo knelt before entering her, greeting her with a heart full of joy. The mere fact of having been there, as Garcilaso de la Vega mentions, was something so extraordinary that if two Indians of the same condition were on one of their roads, the one who came from Cuzco was respected and respected as superior only because he had seen her.

Cusco, Ciudad Puma

Map of Cusco de Squier (1863)

Its rulers who ennobled it by sumptuous buildings, turned it into a calendar city that at the same time reflected in the wise geometry of its streets the universe that they knew, with their stars and stars. Solar city, was worshiped by the towns that received its powerful influence. The years revolved on the venerated head of their gods that were celebrated in the ceques or adoratories according to the course of the months, the weeks and the days. The stations were also represented in their great plan and were divided according to the symbolic distribution of the four suim delimited by the main roads that departed from the sacred place of Waqaypata towards the four regions of the Empire.

Cusco, Ciudad Puma

The city Puma, says Manuel Chavez Ballon, was a sanctuary of time. Its twelve districts corresponded to the twelve months and counted in the sense of the needles of the clock. Each neighborhood had three main streets and each one was a week of ten days. The first one was called Qollana, the second Payan and the third Kayao. Each day was dedicated to a God and therefore there were about 365 huacas that governed the march of time governing the elements and the life of men.

From the belly of Siroqaya was hail, God with crooked feet; The Warasinse that was next to the Qoricancha contained the earthquakes with its hands of stone; In Paukarmarka sat the thunder, voluminous deity of thunderous voice; In Puñuy lived the God of the dream; Rapramurphay valued the warriors, being the seat of a brave general who petrified after helping the Inca Yupanqui, defeating his enemies; Sinka was the mother of the Ayarmarka Indians, being local Goddess; In Kachipuqyo was still prisoner Ayar Kachi, demigods whose heart sprouted the salt; Wayra, the wind, lived in a sanctuary cave; The Mantukalla was the temple of Wiracocha, the creator of men; Tankarani lived in death. The gods abounded in different categories and hierarchies, and received successively the reverence of the lineages of Cusco, which sometimes joined them.

The Spaniards toppled the idols and in some cases placed stone crosses instead. The great concentration of virgins, saints and lords who were in the first Corpus had the same purpose, to banish the idolatries, but the ancient gods transcended and still remain.Cusco, Ciudad Puma

In the city Puma inhabited by gods and demigods also gave the synthesis of the Empire. Along the roads leading from the Waqaypata Square to the four suyus, Chinchaysuyo, Kuntisuyu, Qollasuyu and Antisuyu, the delegations of the conquered villages were grouped respecting the stately area. The curacas made their homes to reside there four months of the year and their children were educated in the imperial schools.

The Inca princes wisely made the heads of each province acquainted with the new rites and customs to teach them in their land when they returned, showing them their power and their magnificence. There were men and men who came from the farthest reaches of the Empire. The suburbs were populated by all their vassals, and long-haired kañari mingled with wank’as of sober clothing, chimus carrying gold filigrees with long-headed qollas, and bands of beautiful robes with chumpiwillkas with colorful bands and chachapoyas, chiles, and konchukos among others, as Raúl Porras says.

The greatest guarantee of their fidelity was given by their own gods housed in the Q’oricancha. If any nation rebelled against the covenant of servitude imposed by the conquerors, their idols were drawn to the Waqaypata to be punished shamefully in the most terrible of humiliations.

The Coloniaje could not modify the plan of the city that conserves until today, its oldest streets. Chávez Ballón who has managed to obtain its relief as it was more than four centuries ago, has also located almost all the huacas and the roads, indicating with precision the places where the gods were. Cusco was evidently a puma city and its urban planners drew the silhouette of the God to emphasize its sacred character. It was the religious and political center of the Tawantinsuyu and as such maintained on the subdued peoples the gallardy and the strength of their feline claws.

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