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Indigenous costumes of Saraguro, Loja, Ecuador

18th Century Spanish mountain peasant dress (WikiMedia) Traditional dress worn by the indigenous majority in the towns of San Lucas and Saraguro is both complex and intriguing. Living north of the city of Loja, but still in Loja Province, the residents of these locations are Kichua who purportedly came here to occupy the land after the Incan conquest. The possible origins of their costumes is a surprise and also foreign. The controversial suggestion is that the ruler of another conquering force, the king of Spain, decided what his South American subjects would wear. The Spanish made pronouncements about the language to be spoken, the foods produced and consumed in the new world, and religious observations. No area of life was unaffected by these invaders, including clothing. Charles III of Spain wanted his indigenous subjects to adopt the costumes of European mountain peasants. Although there is no absolute proof of this assertion, there are similarities in style between the costumes

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