A Late Formative Period Site in Chimborazo Province, Ecuador

Author(s): Laurie Beckwith

Year: 2017


Compared to the coastal areas of Ecuador, the central highlands of Ecuador are not well known archaeologically, especially for the Formative Period. This paper will report on preliminary survey and excavation research carried out in the Chibunga River Valley, to the south of the modern city of Riobamba, during the 2009 and 2012 field seasons. Test excavations were carried out at the site of Collay, located on a mesa at 3100 masl, to obtain a sample of material culture and material for dating. The site produced a series of Late Formative Period radiocarbon dates and evidence of a well-developed ceramic tradition that while unique to the site, shows a clear relationship to coastal Late Formative Period ceramic styles and to those from Cerro Narrío to the south. In addition the presence of exotic materials, such as spondylus, obsidian and green and alabaster-like ground stone bowls, demonstrates the site’s participation in substantial trade networks. Finally, the location of the site in relationship to nearby mountains and the presence of standing stones with pecked bowls are suggestive of the ritual nature of the site.

Cite this Record

A Late Formative Period Site in Chimborazo Province, Ecuador. Laurie Beckwith. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430869)


Geographic Keywords
South America

Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.691; min lat: -56.945 ; max long: -31.113; max lat: 18.48 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16605