July 23, 2009

Archeologists Find Incan Mummy

Archeologists said on Wednesday that a pre-Incan mummy and eight other skeletons have been dug up from under what is thought to have been a shantytown in the middle of Peru's capital.

For years, homeless people lived on the Huaca Huantille ruins, not knowing underneath them contained an ancient burial site.

Archeologists Roberto Quispe said the bones were from the Ychsma civilization dating from between 1000 and 1400 AD.

The burial site was found after city officials and Peru's national institute of culture kicked 50 homeless families out of the area, where they had built a shantytown on the ruins. 

Hundreds of archeological sites were scattered across Lima.  In some cases, even Catholic churches or mansions were built on top of the Inca ruins after Spanish conquistadors arrived in Peru.

Many huacas were paved over or raided by tomb robbers during centuries of urbanization.

Some huacas have more recently been restored in wealthier neighborhoods, and museums have been built to display tools, baskets and pottery found at the sites.