Chachapoya culture. Formed by a group of autonomous Communities. The Chachapoya culture was developed in the northern forests of the Peruvian Andes. A region characterized by constant rainfall, cloudiness, thick vegetation and swamps. In this way, it extended its territory in about 300 kilometers over the current departments of Amazonas and San Martín, between the years 800 and 1570 A.D.
Historical summary of the Chachapoya culture.
The Chachapoyas descended from other immigrant Andean peoples, who modified their culture assimilating Amazonian customs and traditions. This culture prospered practically isolated, flourishing in the classical period. however, in the fifteenth century were annexed to the Tahuantinsuyo.
accordingly. The so-called cloud warriors despite opposing the Inca dominion. They were conquered quickly. However, the constant uprisings of the Chachapoyas. They forced the Incas to separate them in different parts of the territory.
Around the year 1532. With the arrival of the colony. The Chachapoyas supported the Spaniards in their conquests, but this ended up diminishing the little existing population. Until it disappears. Chachapoya culture
Aspects of the Chachapoya culture.
The Chachapoyas culture was formed by small seigniories that settled in the heights of the river Utcubamba. All these villages having the same customs. They were politically independent and governed by a priestly class who led a curaca. Only the reasons for the integration of these provinces were military and religious.
With regard to economic activity. Agriculture was favoured. Because the soils in the region were very fertile. What procured the cultivations of potato, Olluco, oca, Pope bitter and quinoa additionally developed hunting, gathering and livestock.
The beliefs of the Chachapoyas culture.
Although there is little evidence to determine which were the main gods of the Chachapoyas culture. They’re supposed to worship the snake. Condor and Jaguar. What is really confirmed, is that in their beliefs there was a cult of the dead.
The funerary ritual of the Chachapoyas culture consisted in wrapping the remains of the deceased in fabrics. The burial proceeded to be done in isolated places or mountain cliffs, in two types of cemeteries.
Made of cane and mud. Only the remains of a single person were placed inside. Generally important. Highlighting places of this type as Karajía. Ayachaqui, Léngate, Village of the dead, Chipiruc and Ucaso.
Mausoleums or collective graves.
They were house-shaped graves. Built with Chicuelas stones and mud. External walls painted with gable roofs. This pattern is located in Revash, Sholón. Lagoon of the Condors, the Pinchudos, village of the dead, Guanlic, the flask-Diablohuasi.
The architecture of the Chachapoyas culture.
If something distinguishes the Chachapoyas culture it is its architecture. Determined by buildings made of stones. Frisadas and decorated with geometric ornaments or iconographic designs of snakes on rocks in a repetitive way. Usually the houses were circular. Supported by a basement with stairs or ramps aimed at the entrance.
Some outstanding architectural complexes of the Chachapoyas culture, were.
A city protected with high walls along 600 meters. Located on the top of the Amazon Andes at the edge of a precipice. Counting only three accesses. It had a sophisticated system of roads and drainages of rainwater through canals that roamed the complex. It houses approximately 500 constructions, many of them circular. Being the most important:
Torreón. A structure of 7 meters high that fulfilled the function of defense for possible attacks of neighboring towns.
Inkwell. With a shape of inverted cone and a height of a little more than 5 meters was an astronomical observatory.
Castle. It was the home of a ruler of the Chachapoyas culture, with a rectangular structure consisting of three platforms.
Located in the jungle of San Martín. The impressive fortress presented friezes with symbolic motifs of anthropomorphic characters with open arms and legs or birds with extended wings. In the place were arranged approximately twenty structures, of which three, possessed a diameter of 15 meters.
Manifestations of the Chachapoyas culture.
Among the main artistic expressions of the Chachapoyas culture are.
Aesthetically, it was a simple ceramic art with utilitarian functions. and made in clay. To do this, they used the roll technique. That is to say, they kneaded with long fingers clay cylinders. The main forms were the oval-bodied vessels. Flat base pots with handles and globular cups. Decorated with painted geometric motifs or straight or curved linear incisions.
They made sarcophagi for the deceased of the nobility. They also made wooden figures like the Pinchudos. Some images they used as an architectural ornament that had large phalluses associated with fertility. In the same way they carved anthropomorphic forms in stones and created decorative friezes.
With a primarily funerary function. They were excellent weavers. Especially cotton, the waist girdles are the most used.
Leaving evident architectural and funerary works. The Chachapoyas culture was perhaps a superior civilization of ancient Peru, however. His fate was obliterated by historical events.