Definition of quipu in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkiːpuː/
Pronunciation: /ˈkwɪːpuː/


An ancient Inca device for recording information, consisting of variously coloured threads knotted in different ways.
Example sentences
  • The quipus of the ancient Incas of Peru encoded a wide range of data about people, land, and crops for the government bureaucracy.
  • These runners carried oral messages, small packages, or quipus (Incan counting devices made from strings with a series of knots in them) from village to village and from the capital to all parts of the empire.
  • The Inca, who had no written language, used the quipu - a device made of a series of strings with colored knots - to record census findings and tallies of animal herds and other resources.


From Quechua khipu 'knot'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: quipu

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