Peru archaeologists find hall for human sacrifice
Archaeologists discovered an ancient ritual ground used by a Pre-Columbian civilization for human sacrifices on Peru’s northern coast on Thursday.
The finding appears to support existing hypotheses about a ritual known as “the introduction” performed by the Moche people, an agricultural culture that existed between 100 B.C. and 800 A.D.
“There was a great ceremonial hall or passage integrated into the rest of the architecture that establishes the presence of certain figures of the Moche elite and also the practice of complex rituals such as human sacrifice,” Wester told Reuters.
Carlos Wester La Torre, director of the Bruning Museum in Peru and a leader of the dig, said the ceremonial site likely hosted ritual killings of prisoners of war.
Photographs taken at the site show more than half a dozen skeletons on the floor of the hall.
The remnants of a mural found within the corridor depict three high priests whose ornamentation confirms the involvement of the culture’s political leadership in the ceremony, he said.
His team uncovered a 60-meter-long (197-foot-long) corridor opening up to face three equidistant porticos and five thrones on the archaeological site’s main pyramid.
Peru is believed to be one of the places in the world where agriculture first developed and has hundreds of ancient archaeological sites, including the Inca ruins of Machu Picchu.