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Chungará (Arica)

On-line version ISSN 0717-7356

Abstract

VAUGHN, Kevin J; VAN GIJSEGHEM, Hendrik; LINARES GRADOS, Moises  and  EERKENS, Jelmer W. HEMATITE MINING ON THE SOUTH COAST OF PERU: ARCHAEOLOGICAL INVESTIGATIONS AT MINA PRIMAVERA. Chungará (Arica) [online]. 2013, vol.45, n.1, pp.131-142. ISSN 0717-7356.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0717-73562013000100006.

Despite the fact that mining is a critical activity to obtain raw materials, very little is known about mining in the prehispanic Andes. In this paper we present evidence of ancient mining activities from Mina Primavera, a well-preserved hematite mine from Nasca, south coast of Peru dating primarily to the Early Intermediate Period (ca. A.D. 1-750) and to the Middle Horizon (ca. A.D. 750-1,000). Our excavations provide evidence not only for the extraction and processing of hematite -used in offerings and as pigments- but also provide evidence for rituals that took place in the mine. We discuss excavations conducted within the mine over several seasons, as well as our interpretations of artifacts and features found.

Keywords : Mining; Nasca; Wari; hematite.

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