Chavin De Huantar, Peru – A Legacy 3000 Years Old

Posted in South America | July 12, 2011 | 0 Comments


Chavin De Huantar is a Peruvian archaeological site situated at a lofty height in the Andes Mountain Ranges about two hundred and fifty kilo meters to the north of Lima. The Cordillera Blanca mountain Range is situated to the west of the site. Chavin de Huantar is the remnants of an olden culture that is among the most ancient in the whole of South America – The Chavin People. The culture reigned for close to a millennium here.

Experts believe the historical site to have been built somewhere in the vicinity of 1500 BC and has served as the base for the Chavins right until their civilization ended in 300 BC. This was years before the birth of the first Inca. The most vibrant period of the civilization was from 800 BC to 300 BC, when the Early Horizon Period was going on. The Early Horizon Period is commonly referred to as the Chavin Horizon, which will tell you about the impact the Chavins had made at the time.

Chavin de Huantar ruins are located among the lofty summits of the mountain range adjacent, at a height of 3, 180 meters ASL. The site is a total of twelve thousand sq m in area. Within a wall of the perimeter, there is a combination of sunken squares and terraces set. The drainage system is especially notable, it is a complex labyrinth of underground chambers.

The main square had a castilla or a tall pyramid like structure that overlooked the entire area. The ancient architects built most of the structures of the site using stone, which has enabled them to withstand the elements even as thousands of years have passed. These buildings were designed and could withstand natural hazards. Landslides and earthquakes occurred many times over the history of the site, but the buildings successfully withstood these.

There are various clues evident in the Chavin De Huantar about the Chavin culture. Religious artifacts were found in plenty, which suggested that religion and ceremony had an important role in the Chavin society. The Serpent, the Feline and the Condor were the three most important deities worshipped by the Chavins. There were many artifacts found that depicted these entities.

The three thousand year old legacy that is the Chavin De Huantar is at present in a crisis of sorts, as the preservation of the site requires funding that the government of Peru occasionally can not afford. At the time of the El Nino disasters, emergency assistance was asked for by the Institute for National Culture to protect the site.

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