Ancient temple could be one of world’s oldest

Comment on this story


iol scitech feb 13 Caral

AFP

File photo: View of stairs in one of the amphitheatres of the Caral archaeological complex.

Lima - Peruvian archeologists have discovered a temple believed to be about 5,000 years old at the ancient El Paraiso archeological site in a valley just north of Lima, the Culture Ministry said.

If the date is confirmed, it would be among the oldest sites in the world, comparable to the ancient city of Caral, a coastal city some 200 kilometres to the north.

The discovery, dubbed the Temple of Fire, was found in one of the wings of El Paraiso's main pyramid. It includes a hearth that experts believe was used to burn ceremonial offerings.

“The smoke allowed the priests to connect with the gods,” said Marco Guillen, who led the team of researchers who made the find.

Archeologists found the hearth in mid-January as they were carrying out conservation work at a set of 4,000-year-old ruins known as El Paraiso, located some 40 kilometres northeast of Lima in the Chillon River Valley.

The discovery shows “that the Lima region was a focus of civilizations in the Andean territory,” Deputy Culture Minister Rafael Varon told reporters.

Archeologists believe the ancient coastal civilizations raised crops including cotton, which they traded with coastal fishermen for food.

El Paraiso, spread across 50 hectares, has 10 buildings and is one of the largest ancient sites in central Peru. - Sapa-AFP

Hungry for more scitech news? Sign up for our daily newsletter


sign up
 
 

Comment Guidelines



  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

     

Join us on

IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks