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Shamans Market-Cuzco, Peru
Cusco often spelled Cuzco (or Qosq’o in the Quechua language) is a city in southeastern Peru, near the Urubamba Valley of the Andes mountain range, its elevation is around 3,400 m (11,200 ft).
This Andean city is the uneasy bearer of many grand titles. It is the historic capital of the Inca empire, and is now the undisputed archaeological capital of the Americas, as well as the continent’s oldest continuously inhabited city. It was declared a World Heritage Site in 1983 by UNESCO. Few travelers to Peru will skip visiting this premier South American destination, which is also the gateway to Machu Picchu.
Legend tells that in the 12th century, the first inca, Manco Capac, was charged by Inti, the ancestral sun god, to find the navel of the earth (qosq’o in the Quechua language) –the spot where he could plunge a golden rod into the ground until it disappeared. When at last Manco discovered such a spot, he founded the city that was to become the thriving capital of the Americas’ greatest empire.
The quena is a woodwind instrument consisting of a hollow tube with holes cut for notes. It is played by placing the mouthpiece notch under the bottom lip & blowing. Originally constructed of animal bone or bamboo shoots, some quenas today are made of wood. The smallest is called a quenilla and the largest is called a quenacho. Although its origin is unclear, the quena has been found in nearly all countries of Latin America.
The sweet melody of the quena flute evokes images of tranquil Andean highlands. Quena means many-holed object in the Quechua language and it is said to have entranced birds to soar above the person playing it. This may be no wonder, given that early versions the quena were crafted from condor bone. Engraved with the name taki, which in Quechua means song.