In an amazing find, a team of archeologists working in Peru uncovered royal tombs that were still intact with riches. At the dig site, the graves of three Wari queens were found.
The internationals team of researchers, led by Polish and Peruvian archaeologists, have made a remarkable find in Peru. The site is located at El Castillo de Huarmey, about four hours drive north of Lima. According to NBC News, the tombs appear to be the first unlooted ones of the Wari civilization. The burial chamber was initially noticed in 2010 by the archeologists through use of aerial photography.
The Wari civilization is an early empire of South America, predating the Incan civilization. The tomb has been dated to be between the years 700 and 1000 A.D.
The announcement of the find was officially made on June 28, 2013 in a press conference, reported National Geographic.
The work at the site has been ongoing, but the team has kept the project a secret out of fear looters might come to disturb the find. Reportedly, thievery have been occurring at the site for centuries, but somehow robbers did not find the tombs containing the remains of the three Wari queens.
So far, the team has unearthed over 1,000 artifacts. These include gold and silver treasures and ceramics. Additionally, a unique find of several ancient bronze and gold tools were also discovered.
Along with the bodies of the royals and other artifacts, the remains of dozens of other individuals were found. Experts speculate these bodies may have been human sacrifices.
It is also believed that women may have held a more prominent position that previously thought.
"The women were buried with finely engraved ear pieces made of precious metals that once were believed to be used only by men," archaeologist Patrycja Przadk said, reported Reuters.
Researchers are hoping the discovery of these ancient burial chambers will shed some additional light on the Wari society, as much of its origins and practices are still a mystery to modern society. Researchers are hoping they may also be able to find information on how the civilization rose and then fell, to be followed by the Incan empire. The Incas were well documented, but with the Wari, not so much.
"For the first time in the history of archeology in Peru we have found an imperial tomb that belongs to the Wari empire and culture," lead archeologist Milosz Giersz said, according to the Reuters report.
It is predicted there is much additional work to be done over the next decade at this site.