A Trip Down Memory Lane

In my free time (yes, I had some), I was fortunate enough to visit some Peru’s marvelous treasures. My visits of the Museo de Sitio Huaca Pucllana and of the Rafael Larco Museo truly were unforgettable and enabled me to deepen my meager knowledge of the Peru’s rich history.

Visiting Museo de Sitio Huaca Pucllana

Huaca Pucllana is located in Miraflores, just a few blocks from my hostel. After having seen what Lima had to offer, going there was a breath of fresh air! This key archaeological site was revealed 30 years ago and has been built about 1,600 years ago by the inhabitants of Lima who primarily used the site as a religious locus. The site consists of the remains of a main pyramid and a few other small buildings around, which I got to visit after paying S/. 5.00 to join a guided tour.

2014-05-25 14.39.50Incredible view of the “old Lima” v. the “new” Lima

2014-05-25 14.52.52Reconstitution of a ritual

2014-05-25 14.51.24Remains of the main pyramid (side view)

2014-05-25 14.38.31 HDRRemains of the main pyramid (front view)

During the tour, I learned that every single adobe was made of earth mixed with water which was supplied by irrigation channels. Each piece was handmade and took from 2-3 days or to 2-3 weeks to dry according to the season. All adobes are vertical (as you can see below), with a small space between the pieces to prevent collapse in case of earthquake.

2014-05-25 14.59.15 HDRLayout of adobes

At the Plaza de los Ancestros, I had the opportunity to visit the remains of a Wari tomb in which a man, a woman and three sacrificed babies have been buried. According to the Waris, death came from another world and infants, who were considered pure (and therefore close to the divinities) were used as guide to the after-world. Hence, whenever a member of a wealthy family died, a baby coming from a poor family was chosen, executed in a pretty gruesome manner (I’ll spare you the details) before being buried in the grave with the dead. Similarly, women and girls between 12 and 25 years were also sacrificed either with their children, or on the grounds that they were “pure” virgins. Nonetheless, as mentioned by the guide, being chosen to guide the dead was an honor not only for the ones being sacrificed, but also for their families.

2014-05-25 14.48.29Inside one of the tombs

Visiting the Rafael Larco Museo

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