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

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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780292708907
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Publication date: 06/28/2001
Edition description: 1 ED
Pages: 330
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.88(d)

About the Author

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

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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"Well written and cogently argued, this book will appeal to . . . scholars of complex societies worldwide."

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