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Ayacucho is the capital of the department of Ayacucho in Peru.
The origin of the name Ayacucho is said to come from words in Quechua that mean "city of the dead".
The city of Ayacucho is located in the central sierra of Peru, 2,761 metres above sea level. It is bordered by three rivers: the Mantaro, Pampas and Apurimac. Next to the city is the Picimachay Cave, which has remains more than 15,000 years old.
The city was founded in 1539 as San Juan de la Frontera de Huamanga by Francisco Pizarro who chose the location to bridge the distance between Lima, and Cusco.
During the Peruvian War of Independence, the area surrounding Ayacucho was the last territory held by the Spaniards. On December 9, 1824, the Battle of Ayacucho, or "La Quinua", took place at Pampa de La Quinua, few miles away from Ayacucho, near the town of Quinua. This battle -- between the Spanish and republican troops -- sealed the independence of Peru and South America. The republican forces were lead by Sucre, Bolivar's lieutenant. The patriot army defeated the colonial regime, so Bolivar changed the city's name to Ayacucho. After the battle, Vicerroy Jose De la Serna signed the final capitulation whereby Spaniards agreed to leave Peru.
Ayacucho is also known as the city of 33 (or 37?) (colonial) churches, such as Santo Domingo, San Agustin and San Francisco. The oldest churches in the city were built in the 15th century, and contain Spanish, Latin and Moorish influences.
The city of Ayacucho has a population of 140,000.
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This city is also known as: Ayacucho.