It appeared in the north of Peru. The curious thing is that it was lost for more than a century, but it is about a thousand years old. Archaeologists managed to recover a millenary fresco from pre-Hispanic times.
It represents mythological scenes. They had already seen it in black and white photographs from more than a century ago. Swiss archaeologist Sam Ghavami led the excavations in October. He spent four years searching for the cave painting, which he believes could be about 1,000 years old. He was assisted by a team of Peruvian students.
“It is an exceptional discovery. First of all because it is rare to unearth mural paintings of such quality in pre-Columbian archaeology. The composition of this painting is unique in the history of mural art in pre-Hispanic Peru,” he said.
The fresco is part of the temple of Huaca Pintada. This belonged to the Moche civilization, which flourished between the 1st and 8th centuries. It venerated the Moon, rain, iguanas and spiders. The discovered mural is about 30 meters long. Its images in blue, brown, red, white and mustard yellow paint are exceptionally well preserved.
The painted images “seem to be inspired by the idea of a sacred hierarchy. It is built around the cult of the ancestors. And their intimate links with the forces of nature,” according to Ghavami. The archaeologist believes that “it could be interpreted as a metaphorical image. A sign of the political and religious order of the ancient inhabitants of the region”.
The discovery is also unusual. It shows a mixture of styles and elements of two pre-Inca cultures. The Moche and Lambayeque cultures are involved. These lived on the northern coast of Peru between 900 and 1350 AD.
The track of the photos
The existence of the mural was only known through black and white photos taken in 1916. It was made by the German ethnologist Hans Heinrich Bruning, who lived in Peru for many years. However, treasure hunters destroyed the wall when they tried to loot the site.
Over the years, the fresco piqued Ghavami’s interest. It took him two years to obtain permission from the family that owned the land where the mural was found. Thanks to this, the recovery of a millenary fresco was achieved.Elitetorrent: History and Alternative Sites