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city, north-central Ecuador, in an Andean basin on the upper Patate River at an elevation of 9,055 ft (2,760 m). Latacunga lies 20 mi (32 km) southwest of the active volcano Cotopaxi and has been seriously damaged by quakes. Although completely destroyed in 1797, it was subsequently rebuilt. The city serves as a commercial centre for the surrounding cattle-raising and farming region. Industrial activities include flour milling and the manufacture of building stone (from local volcanic rock), furniture, pottery, and gunpowder. Latacunga has been a Roman Catholic episcopal see since 1963. Pop. (2001) 51,689.