What is a Hill of Beans Really Worth?: Paleoethnobotanical Analysis of Urban Huari Foodways

Author(s): Geoffrey Taylor

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Seeing Wari through the Lens of the Everyday: Results from the Patipampa Sector of Huari" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

Preliminary investigation into the use of plants at the site of Huari from the 2017 field season of the Programa Arqueológico Prehistoria Urbana de Huari resulted in new information placing the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) as a central component of the daily meal for those living in Patipampa in the Middle Horizon (AD 600-1000). Studies have expanded since then to include materials from the 2018 excavation season and further experimental archaeology work to enable finer identification of plant varieties. The intent of this paper is to answer questions about the inhabitants of Patipampa and how food remains reflect their roles within the household, the city, and the political entity of Wari. Are those dwelling in Patipampa architectural complexes farmers, craftspeople, or other types of specialists? What can be gleaned about administrative control of food within the city of Huari? To what degree were foreign foods relied upon, and what does this tell us about Huari’s socioeconomic relationships with people in the greater Wari sphere? Did the administrators of the Wari state strategize to ensure a sustainable food supply for the burgeoning urban population of Huari?

Cite this Record

What is a Hill of Beans Really Worth?: Paleoethnobotanical Analysis of Urban Huari Foodways. Geoffrey Taylor. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 452293)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -82.441; min lat: -56.17 ; max long: -64.863; max lat: 16.636 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 25127