LIMA Ė A team of archaeologists with Peruís National Institute of Culture, or INC, discovered a dozen graves and an equal number of pre-Columbian earthen enclosures at a complex located in an urban district of the ancient city of Cuzco, the official Andina news agency reported.
The discovery was made at an archaeological site known as Qata Ccasapata Llacta (a Quechua phrase that means village at the summit where it is cold). According to the report, people dedicated to serving the elite in Inca times lived at that satellite settlement.
The site is located in the northwestern part of that southeastern city, near a ravine and overlooking the Francisco Bolognesi housing community.
Also found at the same complex was an altar that may have served as a place of worship for the inhabitants of the village, archaeologist Carmen Concha Olivera told Andina.
One of the 12 graves was believed to be that of a important person because his skeletal remains were placed inside a large funerary urn along with 10 metal, ceramic and stone objects, Concha Olivera said.
Surrounding the urn were three graves of children who may have been sacrificed and another of a woman who could have been the manís wife, all located alongside a stone incense burner.
Most of the graves were found inside the earthen enclosures, while the others were found underneath patios, stairs and footpaths, Concha Olivera said.
Seven of the graves have been perfectly preserved, but the other five have been looted by robbers.
The architecture is rustic and features reused material dating back to the local Killke culture, which preceded the Incas, and other elements were found including small patio-like spaces, passageways and terraces, the archaeologist said.
According to Andinaís report, Qata Ccasapata Llacta dates back prior to the Incas, who began as a tribe of the Killke culture in the Cuzco area around the 12th century A.D. EFE