Construction workers digging a trench to install a gas pipeline have uncovered a mass grave containing the bodies of 12 people.
Remains of both children and adults were found by the contractors on Tuesday and archeologists have dated them as between 600 and 800 years old.
It’s theorised the bones could be related to Chancay and Huaura cultures which existed in Peru prior to Spanish colonisation in the 1500s.
The find occurred in a neighbourhood within the northern part of the capital Lima, and work immediately stopped so the remains could be removed.
Footage from the site shows skulls, some with hair still attached, and a number of amulets related to traditional burial. Experts can be seen painstakingly removing dirt and sand from the bones.
Details of ancient culture revealed
Gas company archeologist Roberto Quispe told Reuters workers were trained prior to the dig about protocols for handling such finds and alerted authorities.
"We found about 12 pre-Hispanic burials of adults and children related to the Chancay culture, about 600 years old, and others from the Huaura culture, more than 800 years old,” he said.
These people were buried with very interesting offerings, some with clay and ceramic figurines, possibly representing a female deity that accompanied them in their death trance."
Peru is a country rich in archaeological treasures. It has hundreds of sites that date back thousands of years and span dozens of cultures, including the Incan empire that was in power when Spanish explorers arrived in the early 1500s.
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