- a device consisting of a cord with knotted strings of various colors attached, used by the ancient Peruvians for recording events, keeping accounts, etc.
Origin of quipu
1695–1705; < Spanish < Quechua khipu
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for quipu
After these words he sat down, and threw in his quipu—a movement which was imitated by the other chiefs.The Insurgent Chief
The first material book was doubtless a series of knots well represented by the quipu (Fig. 2) of the ancient Peruvians.Stories of Useful Inventions
Samuel Eagle Foreman
The quipu, or knotted reckoning cord was in use in Peru, as in China.The Works of Hubert Howe Bancroft, Volume 5
Hubert Howe Bancroft
The quipu has been sent round, and the chiefs who will be present at the meeting are twenty in number.
Which are the nations that accepted the quipu, and sent their warriors to the gathering place?
- a device of the Incas of Peru used to record information, consisting of an arrangement of variously coloured and knotted cords attached to a base cord
C17: from Spanish quipo, from Quechua quipu, literally: knot
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for quipu
ancient Inca recording device using knotted cords, 1704, from Quechua quipu "knot."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper