The cachua (qachwa, kashua, kaswa, kachura) (ˈqɑt͡ʃwa or ˈχɑt͡ʃwa, diminutive form cachuita) is a term from Quechua language qhachwa, meaning "round dance," that is the Spanish name for a Latin-American baroque dance form found mainly in Peru. It still exists today as a circle dance.[1] The term was also applied to some villancicos to Spanish texts with cachua rhythm, such as two examples in a report submitted to Charles IV of Spain c.1788-1790.[2] It is in rapid unsyncopated 2/4 time.

Dancing a qhachwa, Sarwa district, Victor Fajardo Province, Peru


  1. ^ Willi Apel Harvard dictionary of music 1969 Page 118 "Cachua. Term (also cachina, kashwa, kjaswa, etc.) in the Quechuan language meaning "round dance." Chronicles of the early 17th century indicate that the cachua was popular before the Spanish conquest and describe it as a dance in which men and women formed a circle "while around them wove the dancers."
  2. ^ Appel "A report sent to Charles IV of Spain between 1788 and 1790 includes a collection of melodies from northern Peru, which is headed by two Christmas songs subtitled cachua. The present-day cachua is also a circle dance, performed by ......"