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Notes on the Geography of Peru: Cusco: Photo 87

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Here again there are wall niches, their original purpose unknown. Did they hold something? Squier thought not, though his own explanation seems dubious: "Where there are long lines of these walls--as, for instance, those supporting the terraces of the Colcompata--the monotony of the front is generally broken up by the introduction of countersunk niches, something like the 'blind windows' which our architects introduce to relieve the blank walls of houses" (pp. 432-3). An architect writes, "As far as Ecuador to the north and Bolivia to the south, the shape identifying the Inca presence--the trapezoid--was imposed as the seal of the conquering culture" (Graziano Gasparini and Luise Margoles, Inca Architecture, p. 5).

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