Ritual and Pilgrimage in the Ancient Andes: The Islands of the Sun and the Moon

Overview

The Islands of the Sun and the Moon in Bolivia's Lake Titicaca were two of the most sacred locations in the Inca empire. A pan-Andean belief held that they marked the origin place of the Sun and the Moon, and pilgrims from across the Inca realm made ritual journeys to the sacred shrines there. In this book, Brian Bauer and Charles Stanish explore the extent to which this use of the islands as a pilgrimage center during Inca times was founded on and developed from earlier ...

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Ritual and Pilgrimage in the Ancient Andes: The Islands of the Sun and the Moon

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Overview

The Islands of the Sun and the Moon in Bolivia's Lake Titicaca were two of the most sacred locations in the Inca empire. A pan-Andean belief held that they marked the origin place of the Sun and the Moon, and pilgrims from across the Inca realm made ritual journeys to the sacred shrines there. In this book, Brian Bauer and Charles Stanish explore the extent to which this use of the islands as a pilgrimage center during Inca times was founded on and developed from earlier religious traditions of the Lake Titicaca region.

Drawing on a systematic archaeological survey and test excavations in the islands, as well as data from historical texts and ethnography, the authors document a succession of complex polities in the islands from 2000 BC to the time of European contact in the 1530s AD. They uncover significant evidence of pre-Inca ritual use of the islands, which raises the compelling possibility that the religious significance of the islands is of great antiquity. The authors also use these data to address broader anthropological questions on the role of pilgrimage centers in the development of pre-modern states.

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What People Are Saying

Helaine Silverman
Well written and cogently argued, this book will appeal to . . . scholars of complex societies worldwide.
Helaine Silverman
Well written and cogently argued, this book will appeal to . . . scholars of complex societies worldwide.
Helaine Silverman, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Helaine Silverman
Well written and cogently argued, this book will appeal to . . . scholars of complex societies worldwide.
—(Helaine Silverman, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780292708907
  • Publisher: University of Texas Press
  • Publication date: 6/28/2001
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 330
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Brian S. Bauer is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
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Table of Contents

Preface
Chapter 1. Inca Shrine Worship in the Andes
The End of Empire
The Great Sanctuaries of the Empire
The Imperial Cults of the Sun and the Moon
Pilgrimage Centers and the State: A Theoretical Perspective
Chapter 2. The Lake Titicaca Basin and Its Prehistory
The Lake Titicaca Basin
An Overview of the Lake Titicaca Basin Prehistory
Chapter 3. Inca and Early Colonial Activities in the Lake Titicaca Basin
Ramos Gavilán (1621) and Cobo (1653)
Lake Titicaca and the Origins of the Inca
The Inca Conquest of the Lake Titicaca Basin
The Early Colonial History of the Island of the Sun
Summary and Discussion
Chapter 4. The Islands of the Sun and the Moon Today: Geography, People, and Research
Geography and People of the Islands
Research on the Islands of the Sun and the Moon
Chapter 5. The Island of the Moon
Colonial References to the Island of the Moon
The Early Colonial History of the Island of the Moon
The Site of Iñak Uyu
The Archaeological Survey of the Island of the Moon
Summary and Discussion
Chapter 6. The Pre-Inca Occupations on the Island of the Sun
Excavations at Pre-Inca Sites
The Early Prehistory of the Island of the Sun (2000 BC-AD 400)
The Tiwanaku Occupation (AD 400-1100)
The Altiplano Period Settlements (AD 1100-1400)
Chapter 7. The Island of the Sun under Inca Rule
The Incas on the Island of the Sun
Research at the Sites of Pilco Kayma and Kasapata
Archaeological Research in the Sanctuary Area
Astronomical Research on the Island of the Sun and Copacabana Peninsula
Chapter 8. The Pilgrim's Progress: An Archaeological and Historical Perspective
Arriving at Copacabana
The Journey from Copacabana to the Sanctuary of the Sun
The Entrance to the Sanctuary Area
The Sanctuary Area
The Island of the Moon and the Return Home
When Did the Visits Occur and What Was Offered?
Who Maintained the Shrines on the Islands of the Sun and the Moon?
Chapter 9. Pilgrimage and Ritual in the Ancient Andes
Shrine Worship and Regional Control for the Inca Empire
Ideology and Polity
Appendix. Radiocarbon Dates from the Islands of the Sun and the Moon
Notes
Bibliography
Index
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