5,000-Year-Old Temple Discovered Beneath Sand Dune


Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
Font Size:

What is believed to be a 5,000-year-old ceremonial temple was recently unearthed from a sand dune, the Peruvian Ministry of Culture revealed in late June.

Archaeologists started working on the Los Paredones de la Otra Banda-Las Ánimas Archaeological Complex site in northwest Peru in early June, revealing what appeared to be the wall of a multistorey temple, according to an official press release. Findings include friezes of human bodies with bird’s heads, felines, and reptile claws. It’s believed the space was used for specialized ceremonies.

“We are probably looking at a five-thousand-year-old religious complex that is an architectural space defined by walls built of mud. We have what would have been a central staircase from which one would ascend to a kind of stage in the central part,” project director Dr. Luis Armando Muro Ynoñán said in the statement.

A second dig at the site revealed architecture from the Moche period, around 600 to 700 A.D. The burial of a child aged 5 or 6 years old, dating from a later period, was also uncovered at the site. (RELATED: Police Find Man’s Ancient Peruvian Mummy ‘Girlfriend’ In Delivery Bag)

The Moche were an Andean civilization, known for their ceremonial designs and architecture. In 2023, archaeologists uncovered a Moche ceremonial site in Panamarca, Peru, coated in intricate murals. Some of the most notable were those of two-faced men holding strange treasures.