Forschungen zur
Band 2

Hrsg. von der Kommission für Archäologie
Außereuropäischer Kulturen des DAI
of Palpa, Peru

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Analysis, and

19 × 29 cm

Hard cover box containing:

1 book:
184 pages, soft binding, 82 illustrations
(tables, figures, and maps; colour/b&w)

10 folded supplements:
2 orthophotos, 102 × 72cm
2 maps, 102 × 72 cm
6 maps, 52 × 68 cm

database + movie (avi and mpeg)

ISBN 978-3-929290-32-5

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Sample pages (incl. Introduction) [270KB]

The Geoglyphs of Palpa, Peru is a revision of the author´s Ph.D. thesis. In this study, the famed geoglyphs of the Paracas and Nasca cultures on the south coast of Peru are investigated in order to better understand their function and meaning. Combining aerial photogrammetry, archaeological fieldwork, and GIS-based analysis, more than 600 geoglyphs in the vicinity of the modern town of Palpa were recorded and analyzed. This interdisciplinary approach enabled the establishment of the first digital archive of these prehispanic monuments. It also led to important new insights into the origin, development, and spatial context of the geoglyphs. The Palpa dataset was furthermore used to test a recent model that explains the function and meaning of the Nasca geoglyphs in terms of Andean social, cultural, and religious traditions. The results of this study indicate that the ancient activities which took place on the geoglyphs revolved around concepts of water and fertility, and were a means of expressing social status and cultural concepts. The geoglyphs integrated the desert into the cultural landscape of the valley-based Paracas and Nasca societies, and were thus a valuable cultural resource that can still be appreciated today.

Karsten Lambers is an archaeologist with the Commission for Archaeology of Non-European Cultures (KAAK, Bonn) of the German Archaeological Institute (DAI, Berlin). He obtained his MA in American Anthropology from the University of Bonn in 1998, and his Ph.D. in Pre- and Protohistory from the University of Zurich in 2004. During his university studies he conducted archaeological fieldwork in Germany, Mexico, and Bolivia. Since 1999 he has been engaged in the Nasca-Palpa Project in southern Peru where he is investigating the geoglyphs of the Paracas and Nasca cultures in Palpa and Nasca in close cooperation with the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich). Currently his main research interests cover the use of geomatic technologies (photogrammetry, remote sensing, GIS) in archaeology, landscape studies, and the archaeology of the prehispanic cultures of Mesoamerica and the Andes.

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The author presented the book at the following conferences:
Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology, Fargo, ND, USA, April 18-23, 2006, CAA Fargo

Society of American Archaeology, 71st Annual Meeting, San Juan, Puerto Rico, April 26-30, 2006, SAA San Juan

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