2,000-year-old Mochica tomb discovered in northern Peru

A team of Peruvian archeologists directed by Walter Alva discovered a 2,000-year old tomb that apparently belonged to a Mochica warrior.

“This discovery is very important because the tomb could be one of the most ancient tombs at the Huaca Rajada mausoleum,” said Alva, who led the Lord of Sipán excavation in the 1980s. “The remains probably belong to a warrior that was part of the elite close to the Sipán royals.”

The tomb and decorative objects were discovered approximately two weeks ago at the archaeological complex of Huaca Rajada, located in the lower Lambayeque Valley of the northern coast of Peru. The site is well known for being an administrative and religious center of the Moche civilization, and best known for the discovery of several burials of elite residents, including the Lord of Sipán in the 1980s.

The Moche civilization, or Mochica culture, flourished in northern Peru from about AD 100 to AD 800. They are particularly noted for their elaborate painted ceramics, goldwork, and irrigation systems.

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