Mass 15th century grave found in the ancient Peruvian city Chan Chan

Mass grave with more than 25 skeletons of men, women and children dating back to the 15th century is found in the ancient Peruvian city Chan Chan: Burial site could be a resting place for elite members

  • The mass grave was found in the ancient city Chan Chan in what is now Peru
  • Experts uncovered 25 to 30 skeletons belonging to men, women and children 
  • Most of the remains belong to women who were no older than 30 at death
  • The remains are of members of the Chimú empire that reached its height in the 15th century and was also known for its human sacrifices
  • Experts say the mass grave, however, was a burial place for elite members 

A mass grave of 25 to 30 skeletons has been unearthed in the ancient Peruvian city of Chan Chan, which archaeologists believe is the resting place of the society’s elite members.

The remains were discovered in a small space measuring just 107 square feet, roughly 10 feet long and 10 feet wide, located inside what was once the capital of the Chimú empire that reached its height in the 15th century before falling to the Incas in 1470 AD.

Archaeologist Jorge Menese told Reuters that although this ancient society is known for human sacrifices, there is no evidence suggesting that this occurred at the site.

However, researchers plan to conduct tests in the future to determine each of the individual’s cause of death.

Scroll down for video

A mass grave of 25 to 30 skeletons has been unearthed in the ancient Peruvian city of Chan Chan, which archaeologists believe is the resting place of the society’s elite members

The Chimú were a pre-Incan culture that emerged out of the remnants of the Moche culture along the coast of Peru in 900 AD.

These ancient people lived in a strip of desert, 20 to 100 miles, in the South American country, between the Pacific Ocean and the Andes.

It’s thought that the Chimú culture peaked in the first half of the 14th century, developing a complex civilization with different levels of social hierarchy.

Most of the mass graves found in and around the ancient city were a result of human sacrifice, but Menese said the position of these 25 to 30 skeletons suggest they were buried shortly after the person had died.

The remains were discovered in a small space measuring just 107 square feet, roughly 10 feet long and 10 feet wide, located inside what was once the capital of the Chimú empire that reached its height in the 15th cent

Archaeologist Jorge Menese told Reuters that although this ancient society is known for human sacrifices, there is no evidence suggesting this at the site that contains skeletons of men, women and children

Archaeologist Sinthya Cueva said in a video shot at the site that although the remains are of men, women and children, most are women no older than 30.

The Chimú empire is famous for human sacrifices, specifically one uncovered in 2019 that is the largest the world has ever seen.

More than 140 children, along with llamas, were found slaughtered in what is thought to be a mass sacrifice to appease the gods of a now extinct religion.

Many of the children and juvenile animals had their hearts cut out during the grisly ritual.

The children ranged in age from five to 14 years old.

Archaeologist Sinthya Cueva said in a video shot at the site that although the remains are of men, women and children, most are women no older than 30

The Chimú were a pre-Incan culture that emerged out of the remnants of the Moche culture along the coast of Peru in 900AD

It is thought a huge El Niño caused major flooding and storms which triggered the bloody sacrifice.

Analysis of the remains of more than 200 juvenile llamas and humans dates it to approximately 1450, during the peak of the Chimú civilization in northern coastal Peru.

More than 140 children, along with llamas, were found slaughtered in what is thought to be a mass sacrifice to appease the gods of a now extinct religion. Many of the children and juvenile animals had their hearts cut out during the grisly ritual

Study author John Verano, professor of anthropology at Tulane University, said: ‘This site opens a new chapter on the practice of child sacrifice in the ancient world.

‘This archaeological discovery was a surprise to all of us – we had not seen anything like this before, and there was no suggestion from ethnohistoric sources or historic accounts of child or camelid sacrifices being made on such a scale in northern coastal Peru.

‘We were fortunate to be able to completely excavate the site and to have a multidisciplinary field and laboratory team to do the excavation and preliminary analysis of the material.’

WHO WERE THE CHIMU PEOPLE OF ANCIENT PERU?

The Chimu were a pre-Incan culture that emerged out of the remnants of the Moche culture along the coast of Peru in 900AD. It was the largest pre-Columbian Empire in Peru until the Inca. 

The Chimu people lived in a strip of desert, 20 to 100 miles (30 to 160 km) wide, between the Pacific and the Andes.  

It’s thought that the Chimú culture arose in the first half of the 14th century, developing a complex civilization with different levels of social hierarchy.

They built cities and large irrigation systems, according to Britannica.

The culture was dominated by agriculture, though they also became known for their stunning textiles and pottery, now famed for their black ceramics and intricately worked precious metals.

The Chimu are thought to have survived by fishing and worshipped the moon, believing it to be more powerful than the sun.

Archaeologists believe they practised ritual sacrifice.

Around 1470 AD, the Inca ruler Tupac Inca Yupanqui conquered the Chimu. The Inca subsequently absorbed many of their practices, including political organization, irrigation systems, and road engineering.

Yupanqui’s rule was short lived, however, as the Spanish conquered the region in 1534 AD. 

Source: Read Full Article