Archaeological Sites of the Incans Cultures – Unit 3: South America Section 1: History, Geography and Government
CUZCO – capital city of the Inca • Was constructed in the form of a giant puma: • The body of the puma contained the palaces, temples and government buildings; the head of the puma was the fortress of Sacsahuaman.
Recently, researchers have found many tunnels under the city, and some think that maybe there's another city beneath Cuzco.
A curious fact about Cuzco is that the idea of "El Dorado" was not a myth - in the Sun Temple and the Temple of Koricancha, which means "courtyard of gold" in Quechua, was a temple to worship the god Inti (the sun) Killa (moon), and Koyllur (stars). In the temple, there had been some walls that were covered in gold; in the gardens there were plants made of gold and jewels. ¡“El Dorado” wasn’t a myth!
“El Dorado” • When the Spaniards arrived, they described Cuzco as a rich and beautiful place full of gold, beginning the myth of "El Dorado". • Today, the temple is covered with a church but you can still see the stones of the Sun Temple.
This fortress is enormous and interesting. The name ‘Sacsahuaman’ means ‘satisfied falcon’ in quechua. It is located north of Cuzco Sacsahuaman
There is a series of platforms with zig zag walls, made of huge boulders. • After the Spanish conquered the Incas, they removed many of the boulders. So what we see today is only a small amount of what it was in the past. • Also, this area is where the bloody battle between the Spanish and the Inca occurred. • The fortress of Sacsayhuaman was a place to protect citizens; it was a safe place to go in case of an attack.
Sacsahuaman • And a curious fact: when the first European visitors came to the fortress, they thought that the earth was inhabited by giants because the walls were so big.
Machu Picchu, which means Old Mountain in Quechua, is one of the new seven wonders of the world. • It is a city built on a hill above the Urubamba River northwest of the city of Cuzco.
It was "discovered" by Hiram Bingham in the year 1911 and some say it was not a spiritual place but a royal palace or a royal retreat for the Emperor Pachacuti. There are two districts or areas in Machu Picchu - the Agriculture and the District Urban District. Machu Picchu
In the Agricultural District, there are many terraces that were used to grow crops and halt erosion caused by rain. Also, this district includes buildings and simple houses. Terracess Reserves buildings Simple houses El Distrito Agricultura
el Templo con Tres Ventanas el Intihuatana Distrito Urbano: el Templo del Sol In the Urban District, three sacred sites: The Intihuatana is a sundial, the Sun Temple and the Temple with three windows.
What is very interesting about Machu Picchu is that the Incas built walls without using mortar (glue). All the stones were carved to fit each other perfectly! Las Piedras Perfectas
http://www.mp360.com/ Go "visit" Machu Picchu with this website - and when you enter the site, it is as if you were there.
In all, the Incas had many archaeological sites, but three of the most famous sites were: • the city of Cuzco and the myth of "El Dorado" • the Sacsayhuaman fortress - with giant-sized walls • and Machu Picchu - the lost city in the clouds