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Thousand-year-old "mythical" temple complex found in Peru

Washington, Sat, 30 Jan 2010 ANI

Washington, January 30 (ANI): Archaeologists have found a thousand-year-old "mythical" temple complex under the windswept dunes of northwestern Peru.


According to a report in National Geographic News, the discovery of the complex, excavated near the city of Chiclayo between 2006 and late 2009, has injected a dose of reality into the legend of Naylamp, the god who supposedly founded the pre-Inca Lambayeque civilization in the eighth century A.D., following the collapse of the Moche civilization.


That's because evidence at the Chotuna-Chornancap archaeological site indicates the temple complex may have belonged to people claiming to have descended from Naylamp-suggesting for the first time that these supposed descendants existed in the flesh.


"The creation of the building matches in time with the legend's emergence," said dig leader La Torre.


Also, in Lambayeque folklore "only in the Naylamp legend (is) a throne ... used by high-ranking characters to reinforce power and authority," he added.


According to legend, after the Moche civilization had collapsed in northwestern Peru, Naylamp arrived from the ocean with a huge fleet of rafts and warriors to begin a new empire.


The most important discovery in the thousand-year-old Lambayeque temple in Peru was the throne, thought to have been used by Naylamp's supposed descendants.


From this perch, a ruler would impose and reinforce his political, religious, and military power.


The small recess in front of the throne was used for offerings, according to archaeologists.


The presence of a throne-used only by the god Naylamp in Lambayeque folklore-and other indicators in the newfound temple, such as an adjacent room for religious ceremonies, suggest that the Lambayeque people viewed their rulers, thought to be Naylamp's descendants, as semi-divine figures. (ANI)


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