The Chachapoya people and the Empire of the Incas

The Chachapoya people and the Empire of the Incas an illustrated lecture with archaeologist, writer and broadcaster David Drew

Cost: £10 including complimentary refreshments

Course start date: 29/9/17

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Duration Day Date/Time Room Tutor
1 day
Friday
29/09/2017
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
lecture theatre David Drew

Overview

In 1889 the Norwegian artist Edvard Munch went with his friend Paul Gauguin to an exhibition at the Trocadero in Paris. What they saw there was archaeological material belonging to the Chachapoya culture from ancient Peru. Amongst the exhibits were a number of well-preserved mummies that a Frenchman who had recently travelled through Peru had removed intact from the sarcophagi in which they had originally been placed. These mummies were wrapped in textiles, much in the ancient Egyptian manner. But here the arms had been folded and fixed to the side of the head. Munch was clearly impressed by what he saw and it is now largely accepted that these Chachapoya mummies inspired his most disturbing and truly ‘iconic’ painting, ‘The Scream’.

The archaeologist, writer and broadcaster David Drew will talk about this episode and what is known of the history of the Chachapoya, who lived on the Amazonian, jungle side of the Andes in what is now northern Peru. The talk will cover something of the history of the Incas, the nature of their empire and what we now know about their eventual conquest of the Chachapoya. And it will describe one of the greatest archaeological finds in Peru of recent years – the discovery of a whole series of Chachapoya mummies, placed in little burial houses on a cliff face, surrounded by cloud forest and above the remote and very beautiful ‘Lake of the Condors’.

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