Definition of Quechua in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkɛtʃwə/
(also Quecha /ˈkɛtʃə/, Quichua)

noun (plural same or Quechuas)

1A member of an American Indian people of Peru and parts of Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, and Ecuador.
Example sentences
  • For more than 500 years we, the Quechuas, Aymaras and Guaranis, the Indians who are native to this noble land, have been subject to slavery.
  • Above all, the ‘rule of law’ means the accusations that we, the Quechuas, Aymaras and Guaranties of Bolivia keep hearing from our governments: that we are narcos, that we are anarchists.
  • Perhaps the most distinctive dress in the Andean region is worn by the Otavalo Indians, a subgroup of the Quechuas of Peru.
2 [mass noun] The language or group of languages of the Quechua, spoken by some 11 million people.
Example sentences
  • Many serranos speak the Indian language Quichua (descended from the Quechua of the Incas) and some speak no Spanish.
  • They showed not only ancient ruins in great detail, but also the geology and topography of the Cusco Valley and the daily life of the local Indians, who spoke Quichua, the language used by the Inca.
  • They speak Quechua, the language of the Incas, herd alpaca and llamas and grow potatoes and beans, which they trade with their lowland neighbours for corn.


Relating to the Quechua or their language.
Example sentences
  • C. baccatum varieties are usually called aji and C. pubescens is known as rocoto from the name of the pepper in the Quechua language of the Inca.
  • South America in pre-Hispanic times was dominated by the Inca culture, with a tendency to expand into the Inca Empire (or Tahuantinsuyo in the Quichua language).
  • Donning replicas of Inca tunics, rather than contemporary Andean garb, Quechua Indians reenact the Inca sun-worshiping ceremony.



(also Quechan) adjective& noun
Example sentences
  • Wendt reports that the name Potosi is derived from the Quechuan word Potocsi, meaning ‘thunder’ or ‘place of great noise.’
  • Leaving the ruins, we're greeted by women in traditional Quechuan dress.
  • This is not to say that the Quechuan technology was primitive; in fact, it was the most advanced in the New World.


Spanish, from Quechua ghechwa 'temperate valleys'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: Que|chua

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