Results 1 to 1 of 1

Thread: Massive stone structures in the Atacama Desert used for 'ceremonial purposes'

  1. #1
    Senior Member United States skywizard's Avatar
    Join Date
    13th September 2013
    Location
    Dixieland - USA
    Posts
    1,023
    Thanks
    640
    Thanked 6,883 Times in 1,020 Posts

    Massive stone structures in the Atacama Desert used for 'ceremonial purposes'

    Researchers have discovered the remains of an ancient ceremonial site in the Atacama Desert – one of the driest places in the world.

    The stone complex holds several signs of the rituals that took place there thousands of years ago, including a gold-plated vulture head, mortars and grinding slabs used to prepare pigments and hallucinogens, and more than two dozen infant burials.

    The discovery in the Chilean desert, coupled with the reinterpretation of another nearby site, suggests the harsh region was home to hunter-gatherer communities that developed complex ceremonial traditions over the years.


    The stone complex holds signs of the rituals that took place there, including
    mortars and grinding slabs used to prepare pigments and hallucinogens, and
    more than two dozen infant burials. An infant buried with the gold plaque is
    indicated with the black arrow



    The site, called Tulan-52, is estimated to have thrived in the desert’s largest salt flat from around 1110-900BC until 550-360 BC, according to the new study.

    Not far away sits another site, Tulan-52, that existed nearly two millennia earlier.

    The latest research has uncovered a number of similarities between the two that indicate increasing complexity over the years.

    ‘Tulan-54 has all the diagnostic characteristics of a fully developed ceremonial center of the Early Formative in the Salar de Atacama region,’ the researchers explain.

    ‘These include a large and specific type of architecture that required considerable expenditure of energy for its design, construction and maintenance, along with significant evidence for food preparation and consumption, the production of personal ornaments, and deposits of high value.’


    In two of the burials, they also found large gold artifacts:
    a gold-plated wooden vulture head with green malachite
    eyes and crest (left), and an elaborate golden plaque (right).



    The stone complex housed several rooms, in which they found 10 hearths with pits, and 28 ‘richly endowed’ infant pit-burials.

    In two of the burials, they also found large gold artifacts: a gold-plated wooden vulture head with green malachite eyes and crest, and an elaborate golden plaque.

    ‘Numerous mortars and grinding slabs attest to the intense preparation of pigments, foodstuffs and beverages, as well as hallucinogens made from the seeds of cebil and maize, both imported from the lowlands of north-east Argentina,’ the researchers note.

    Just 50 meters away, a cemetery was eventually built.


    Similar items were found at the nearby Tulan-52, including animal bones,
    mortars and grinding stones, as shown above.



    The latest research has uncovered a number of similarities between the two
    that indicate increasing complexity over the years. Fragments of bone
    artifacts and ornaments from Tulan-52 are shown above.



    Similar findings at the nearby Tulan-52, including animal bones, mortars and grinding stones, and niches framed with pillars, now suggest that this earlier site may have been a ‘prototype of ceremonial centers.’

    ‘It can be surmised, therefore, that the major innovations which took place during the two millennia that separate Tulan-52 from Tulan-54 – such as the increasing use of domestic camelids for long-distance transport, plant cultivation, use of hallucinogens, pottery and gold metallurgy – primarily served the needs of increasingly elaborate rituals and demanding elites,’ the researchers wrote.

    ‘Indeed, considering the very slow increase in the consumption of domestic plants and camelids between the Puripica-Tulan and Tilocalar phases, alongside the continuing importance of wild plant and animal species during the later phase, it is clear that subsistence needs were not the primary factor of this “Neolithisation process.”’





    Source: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencet...-purposes.html



    peace...
    ~~ One foot in the Ancient World and the other in the Now ~~
    ~~ 'cuse me while I kiss the sky... Jimi Hendrix ~~
    ~~ Never stop looking for what's not there ~~
    ~~ Our past is just a story we tell ourselves ~~

  2. The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to skywizard For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (10th November 2018), Aragorn (10th November 2018), Dreamtimer (10th November 2018), Elen (10th November 2018), JATUS (14th November 2018), Kitsune (10th November 2018)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •