Ayacucho Quechua

Ayacucho Quechua

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Ayacucho Quechua

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Ayacucho (also called Chanca or Chanka, after the former Chancas local tribe that dominated the area before Incan conquest) is one dialect of the Quechua language, spoken in the Ayacucho region of Peru, as well as by immigrants from Ayacucho in Lima. With roughly a million speakers, it is one of the largest dialects of the language along with Cusco Quechua. The literary standard of Southern Quechua is based on these two closely related Quechua varieties.



Ayacucho Quechua uses only three vowels: , , and , which are rendered by native speakers as , , and respectively. When these vowels appear adjacent to the uvular fricative , they are lowered (with instead being produced further back), yielding , , and respectively. For bilingual speakers, the Spanish vowels, , , and may also be used.


Bold type indicates orthographic representation. Phonetic pronunciation, if different, is indicated by IPA symbols in brackets.

Notable differences from Cusco Quechua:
  • There are no ejective stops. See Cusco Phonology for examples of ejective consonants.
  • q represents the uvular fricative rather than the uvular stop of Cusco. The q grapheme is kept merely to allow for easy comparison due to its use with other Quechua languages.
  • Ayacucho Quechua lacks the characteristic spirantization of stops at the end of a syllable; compare Cusco ñuqanchis with Ayacucho ñuqanchik "we/you and I".

Ayacucho Quechua has borrowed hundreds of words from...
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