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Cusco province (Peru)

Last modified: 2021-07-03 by rob raeside
Keywords: cusco | cuzco | qusqu | qosqo | rainbow flag |
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Cusco district

Flag of Cusco image by Ivan Sache, 4 June 2021

The Council of the Cusco Provincial Municipality unanimously approved on 4 June 2021 Ordinance No. 8 prescribing the addition of the municipal emblem, the Echenique Sun, to the "rainbow" flag hitherto used by the town.
Andina, 4 June 2021
Ivan Sache, 4 June 2021

Flag of Cusco image by Jan-Patrick Fischer and António Martins, 02 September 2001

A 7-stripped rainbow flag: red - orange - yellow - green - light blue - dark blue - purple.
António Martins, 02 September 2001

The "rainbow" flag was adopted on 9 June 1978 but had been used unofficially since the 1970s. The design was originally pushed by Radio Tawantinsuyo as a traditional Inca flag.


The municipal emblem is prescribed by Decree no. 63 issued on 23 June 1986 by the Municipal Council. The Echenique Plaque was used by the chief of the Inca Empire, self-styled the son of the sun. Rebel Túpac Amaru II (1736-1781) wore it as the symbol of his power.
The emblem represents a solar calendar featuring representations of Wiracocha (the great creator deity), kay pacha (the perceptible world), ukhu pacha (the inner world), and hanan pacha (the upper realm).
Símbolos Patrios del Perú

By the mid-19th century “the display of antiquities in parlors and salons was confined to the highest strata of Lima society,” she writes. “To own and to display antiquities, to bring them out and show them to one’s guests after dinner, appears to have constituted an element of elite sociability in the city of Lima.”
It was during one such evening on October 25, 1853, that English geographer, explorer, and writer Clements R. Markham attended a dinner party graced with the presence of Peruvian President José Rufino Echenique (1808-1887; in office, 1851-1855).
“Echenique ‘very good-naturedly brought with him some golden ornaments of the Inca period, recently arrived from Cuzco’, among them a breastplate ‘worn by the Inca’, ‘the head of an ornamental pin or topu, worn by the coya or wife of the Inca’, and three flat pieces of gold, which Markham explained represented ‘the leaves out of the Golden Garden of the Incas.'”
Seven years later, Markham’s contemporary, William Bollaert, a writer, chemist, geographer, and ethnologist, interpreted the sketch, declaring the relic to possibly be “an incarial lunar calendar or a zodiac.”
After President Echenique’s death, his daughter sold the piece in 1912 to Dr. Eduard Gaffron, a German ophthalmologist and antiquities dealer who came to Lima in 1892. He in turn sold it a year later to George Gustav Heye, the collector of Native American artifacts, whose collection became the core of the National Museum of the American Indian.
Fertur Peru Travel Blog, 21 September 2017
Ivan Sache, 4 June 2021

Emblem of Cuzco

I found a coat of arms of Cuzco in the Internet, but everywhere in the city and department is this golden Inca-symbol and the rainbow flag in use, even on official buildings. Only on old monuments I could find this coat of arms. On every modern official building, only the golden Inca symbol is used. I only saw the old arms at the wall of old churches, carved in the stone.
Jan-Patrick Fischer, 11 April 2001 and 08 September 2001

The emblem mentioned by Jan-Patrick seems to be the Cusco “coat of arms”, according to the Spanish Wikipedia article.
António Martins, 19 September 2007

At the boleto turístico, you can find the golden symbol with the rainbow flag like a seal. It is the only time I saw this two symbols connected.
Jan-Patrick Fischer, 08 September 2001