From Hunters to Regional Lords: Funerary Practices in Palpa, Peru

  • Johny Isla Cuadrado
Part of the Natural Science in Archaeology book series (ARCHAEOLOGY)


During the pioneering work of Max Uhle, Julio C. Tello, and Alfred Kroeber in the Ica, Palpa, and Nasca valleys on the southern Peruvian coast, hundreds of funerary contexts mainly belonging to the Paracas, Nasca, and Wari cultures were discovered, but only few studies and analyses have been made of these large collections. The same is valid for other collections excavated during the past century in the Palpa and Nasca region. Within the Nasca–Palpa Archaeological Project, more than 200 funerary contexts belonging to different cultural periods were excavated in various sites of the Palpa valleys. The earliest evidence of graves in the Palpa valleys dates to the Archaic period although the most numerous sample are those from Paracas and Nasca times. With a gap during the Initial Period and only little evidence from the Middle Horizon, funerary contexts cover the time from 3500 BC to 900 AD. This chapter presents a summary of the research carried out concerning the funerary practices, describing the main features observed for each epoch, in order to have a better idea of the mortuary customs existing in each period and the changes occurring through time. The chapter concludes with a brief outline of the funerary patterns found and their relation to the characteristics of each society’s structure.


Wari Culture Archaic Period Middle Horizon Pottery Vessel Funerary Context 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Johny Isla Cuadrado
    • 1
  1. 1.Instituto Andino de Estudios Arqueológicos (INDEA)Jesús MaríaPerú

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