Understanding Nasca ‘Trophy Head’ Individuals from the Site of Zorropata in Peru Using Isotopic and Biochemical Methods
This is an abstract from the "SAA 2019: General Sessions" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.
Myriad factors shaped cultural practices such as ‘trophy head’ taking in Andean prehistory. Zorropata, located in the Las Trancas Valley, Nasca, Peru, was a large domestic site with likely ceremonial function occupied relatively continuously from the Late Nasca period (c. AD 450-600) until the early Middle Horizon/Loro period (c. AD 600-1000). Archaeological survey conducted by Katharina Schreiber in the 1990s at Zorropata identified at least one and possibly two adobe compounds that were like structures described by Julio C. Tello at Huaca del Loro, the largest Las Trancas site and local hub dating to the Middle Horizon. At both Huaca del Loro and Zorropata these structures appear to be barbacoa style tombs. Excavations conducted at Zorropata in 2014 recovered eight ‘trophy head’ individuals from the largest cell (Structure 21) of the adobe compound. ‘Trophy head’ individuals were analyzed using isotopic and biochemical data to investigate this practice just prior to and concurrent with Wari influence in the Nasca Region. These individuals shared stylistic similarities with other Nasca samples but also differed in important ways (e.g., the majority were non-local). These results illustrate that the Nasca experience with environmental and sociopolitical challenges differed between valleys within the Southern Nasca Region.
Cite this Record
Understanding Nasca ‘Trophy Head’ Individuals from the Site of Zorropata in Peru Using Isotopic and Biochemical Methods. Sarah Kerchusky, Corina Kellner. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 450022)
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min long: -82.441; min lat: -56.17 ; max long: -64.863; max lat: 16.636 ;
Abstract Id(s): 26182