Friday, November 26, 2010

Wari Archaeological Complex

Wari vase

The Wari people were the first to use military force to conquer the surrounding states. After conquering another people, as in most conquests, the Wari subdued the old cultures and enforced their own way of life forbidding any practice of the former culture, losing all traces of the unwritten culture that was conquered.

The Wari people spread to every corner of Peru eventually conquering the entire country. The capital of the Wari Empire is located near the city of Ayachuco, Peru; however there were many major outposts throughout the country. Wari cities were made up of large rectangular shaped buildings that were laid out in strict grid patterns that would resemble most of today's city block structures.

There is evidence that much of the Inca culture came from the ideas of the Wari people. The Wari people had made up an extensive road system which is the basis for the Incan system of transportation. The Wari people also built strong, stone buildings that had a ventilation system and were earthquake resistant. Another interesting building excavated by National Geographic, was an underground tomb found near the ancient capital Wari that was dug out in the shape of a llama and lined with smooth rocks.

The ancient city of Wari covers close to ten square kilometers and is situated on a hill in southern Peru. Below this aging city, there are numerous tunnels crisscrossing the entire city. This city also lies on one of the major trade routes reaching from the Pacific Ocean and continues on beyond the city. The close proximity to a major trade route is a contributing factor as to why this particular city became the capital.

The Wari People began to decline around 1000 B.C. There is much mystery as to how and why the large Wari Empire disappeared. There is evidence suggesting that the empire failed at a site called Kuelap. This site was situated in a remote location with an enormous wall speculated to be built of three times more material than Egypt's largest pyramid. This site was built by a people known as the Chachapoyan Cloud People who were said to be a tall people with very fair hair. There is no evidence suggesting where these people came from, however, this is possible that Kuelap is the place where the Wari were defeated.

After the steady decline of the Wari people, the Incas had begun their conquest defeating the Wari. However, the Wari king convinced his people that the upper class Wari people were just like the Incas, too good to be under Inca rule. This caused the Wari to flee to the lower jungles of the Andes.

The Wari or Huari Empire was a sophisticated civilization established in the central Andes of Peru during the Middle Horizon (between about AD 750 and 1000). Wari structures were typically large rectangular enclosures, laid out in a strict grid pattern of squares or patios. The largest capital was Pikillaqta; a second center was Jincamocco.

Archaeologists most associated with the Wari include Wendell Bennett, Max Uhle, William H. Isbell, Gordon F. McEwan and Katharina Schreiber.

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