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A Tello-Centric History of Peruvian Archaeology part 3

Part 3 of my 18 chapter history of Peruvian Archaeology centered on Julio C. Tello. The focus of this history are the years 1880 to 1925. This third part includes discussions of studies of time, space and especially religion. Bibliography is in Part
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   CHAPTER TWELVE PERSPECTIVES OF TIME AND SPACE, 1920 -1923 A Chronological Perspective: 1920-1922 It may be recalled that Tello included a complaint in his letter to Pedro Zulen dated October 15, 1920 to the effect that he was being criticized for not publishing the results of his research. That year Tello began to publish his thoughts on the relative chronological histories of known prehistoric cultures in Peru. 1  He was afforded an opportunity to do so in a prologue to a Spanish version of Markham's 1910 book, The Incas of Peru. 2  In this prologue Tello noted that his comments would focus on the chapter 1  In this regard Tello was years behind Means who wrote, "that it is time for a serious attempt to be made to construct for the various cultures of pre-Columbian Peruvian art a chronology, supplied with approximate dates, similar to the one already established for the Maya areaÉFor many years it has been the fashion for South American archaeologists to look askance at all efforts to construct a chronology. The recent researches by Dr. Uhle, of the late Sir Clements Markham, of Sr. Arturo PosnanskyÉafforded material that seems to justify a formal undertaking of the construction of a date-chronology of the various Peruvian cultures. The author has already made a tentative effort in this directionÉ{and is} indebted to DixonÉTozzerÉMeadÉSavilleÉHrdlickaÉMr. Thomas A. Joyce of the British MuseumÉ{and} Dr. Denman Waldo Ross"(Means 1917b: 320-321). Too, Tello was years behind Urteaga who at least as early as 1909 was writing down his thoughts on the srcin and nature of Peru's initial pre-historic settlement. Based on the discoveries that had been made by Uhle in the field, Urteaga then speculated that the earliest 'invasion' of South America had taken place two to three thousand years before Christ via the north. This manifested itself as the southern advancement of a sedentary megalithic culture of common language and common political institutions and customs that spread from Columbia to Ecuador to Peru and then to Bolivia (Urteaga 1909: 209-211). Finally, it should be noted that Uhle had made a first tentative attempt to add dates to his relative chronology using the following reasoning. "The historical exploration of ancient Peru would appear incomplete without a certain chronology. All history of the world aims at establishing fixed dates of great events for comparative treatment. It is, however, difficult to fix dates for the ancient American cultures as it is done for the historical phases of the Old World countriesÉThere is, however, one way of determining facts by chronology. The cultural periods themselves must furnish a scale by which to gauge the average development. New civilizations do not spring up suddenly; cultures develop, flourish, and decay the same as man; and a considerable space of time is required to awaken new cultures out of decaying ones, and to let them mature and die out again in their turn. This process of growth and decay of any one culture embraces always a certain number of centuries. The greater the number of the succeeding phases of civilization, the more even must be the average length of each, and thus resemble the general length of human periodsÉThe development of Peruvian civilizationÉwould result in a stratification of cultures representing between two and three thousand years. About the year 1000 B.CÉthe early Americans in Peru reared their mighty structures to the glory of a creator god" (1903a: 786). 2  What is known about this translated version of Markham's book is that it was edited by Manuel Beltroy and it was likely published by Lima's Editorial Eufori—n in 1920. Specifically when that year this edited version was published is unknown. Means (1919a Note 26: 231) makes reference to the fact that this translated version of the Markham book was in the process of being prepared in an article probably written in late 1919. Too, it is known that Means discussed Tello's prologue in detail, and refers to Tello's reticence to publish, in an article (1920: 217-219) that he completed writing in Lima on November 18, 1920. This is the only known review of Tello's contribution. It seems likely that multiple reviews of the book were published in Lima's magazines and/or newspapers inclusive of comments about Tello. In any case, the earliest review would help us to establish a best guess estimate as to when the book actually came out. It is possible that Tello's prologue was based on a talk he gave at the University of San Marcos. It will 592   in which Markham discussed his megalithic culture. 3  Too, he noted that Markham had distinguished two eras or epochs defined by data archaeological and historical in nature. Tello added that he now felt the archaeological epoch could be subdivided into three cultural periods: archaic, 4  middle, and high, the earliest being preceded by a long primitive or embryonic period of cultural development for which world wide scientific information was lacking (Tello 1920: xiii - xiv). 5  Naturally, Tello's focus was on the northern highlands, a region that he alone had explored, and he used this opportunity to incorporate information derived from his Ancash fieldwork. Tello defined his (First Epoch) Archaic Era/Period of cultural development in Peru as being characterized by large, organized sedentary populations. Though more pastoral than agricultural in nature, they grew yucca, native to the Amazon and the eastern slopes of the Andes, corn, whose srcin was unknown, and potatoes, native to the highlands. The cultivation of these crops was facilitated by labor intensive irrigation networks and terracing reflective of organizational skills. Structural remains evidenced (llama) corrals and (megalithic) habitation - tombs constructed of rows of large and small be recalled that beginning in 1919 he gave a series of talks at the university and it is possible that one or more of these talks was written up in the Lima press. Unfortunately it is unknown when or how he became involved in the project of publishing this translated version of Markham's book. Did Tello hear of it and ask to contribute? Did Tello urge publication and then suggest that he contribute a prologue? There are numerous possibilities. Perhaps correspondence involving Beltroy, Tello, and others would help to clarify what may prove to be a fascinating history regarding this matter. Manuel Beltroy was born in Lima in 1893. In 1911 he began his studies in the Faculty of Letters at the University of San Marcos where he later earned his doctorate in 1925. He was involved in the foundation of the Catholic University of Lima in 1917 and in 1920 he organized the publishing house Editorial Eufori—n (Tauro 1966-67 Volume 1: 179-180). Finally, it has been reported that at an early age Beltroy dedicated his life to publishing. He contributed to Lima's various newspapers and journals and in 1919 he collaborated with William B. Parker in the publication of Peruvians of Today (Paz S. 1921: 51). 3  Referring to the ruins of Tiahuanaco, Markham wrote that its "builders may best be described as a megalithic people in a megalithic age, an age when cyclopean stones were transported, and cyclopean edifices raised. The great antiquity is shown by the masonry and symbolic carvingÉproof that Andean civilization dates back into a far distant past" (1910d: 29-30). 4  In his 1917 cultural chronology for Peru Means wrote the following. "Let us assume Éthat Man entered America from the north and slowly spread southwardÉMore important for us is the cultural type described by Tozzer as 'archaic'ÉIt will perhaps be proved to be the ancestor of most of the later high cultures of Middle and South AmericaÉWe must assume that the people of the archaic period flourished long before the time of the earliest high cultures of Middle America began to develop their own peculiarities, peculiarities which, however, never succeeded in blotting out the fact that all the cultures had a common srcin" (Means 1917b: 383). Means was drawing from the published version of a paper that Hrdlicka had presented at the London meeting of the International Congress of Americanists which Tello had attended in 1912. In this paper Hrdlicka dealt with the current understanding of the initial settlement of the Americas from Asia. Hrdlicka wrote, "From the physical anthropologist's point of view everything indicates that the srcin of the American Indian is to be sought among the yellowish-brown peoplesÉThere are no two large branches of humanity on the globe that show closer fundamental physical relations" (Hrdlicka 1912: 61). Hrdlicka expanded on this topic in a December 1912 article in which he included the following passage. The "writer feels justified in advancing the opinion that there exists to-day over large parts of eastern Siberia, and in Mongolia, Tibet, and other regions in that part of the world, numerous remains, which now form constituent parts of more modern tribes or nations, of a more ancient population (related in srcin perhaps with the latest paleoloithic Europeans), which physically was identical with and in all probability gave rise to the American Indian" (1912: 4). 5  Hence it would appear that Means's archaic was Tello's pre-archaic. 593   stones. The population was well versed in ceramic technology including a special class of pottery which represented the foundation of a later more advanced Andean art style (ibid: xiv - xv). 6  During his subsequent (Second Epoch) Middle Era/Period of cultural development in Peru advancements where made among populations both in the highlands and on the coast. Too, there was evidence for an irradiation of culture from the highlands to the coast during this period. In the Department of Ancash (in general) and in the Huarmey Valley (in particular) rectangular (megalithic) habitation-tombs of the archaic type became the basic architectural form. Too, within the definition of this architectural form fell the single and multi-celled burial structures found in Northern and Central Peru as well as the Aymara chulpas  (or burial chambers of the Southern Peruvian Highlands). Highland centers developed during this period in the Callejon de Huaylas, at Chavin de Huantar, in Cuzco, and at Tiahuanaco. By the same token, coastal pyramids derivative of those constructed in the highlands were constructed at Paramonga and at Tambo de Mora. 7  During this period Recuay and Chavin art styles advanced in the mediums of clay 6  Markham had written the "advances made by the Andean people in agriculture and in the domestication of animals must have been proceeding from a very remote period. Maize had been brought to a high state of cultivation, and this must have been the result of careful and systematic labour during many centuries. The cultivation must have commenced at so remote a time that it is not even certainly known from what wild plant the srcinal maize was derived. The wild potato, however, is known. It is a small tuber, about the size of a filbert, which has scarcely increased in size after a century of careful cultivation. Yet the Andine people after many centuries of such cultivation, produced excellent potatoes of several kinds, for each of which they had a name. The same may be said of the oca  and quinoa  crops. The agricultural achievements of Andean man are evidence of the vast antiquity of his race in the same region. The domestication of the llama and alpaca furnish additional evidence of this antiquity. There is no wild llamaÉIt must have been centuries before the llama was completely domesticatedÉThere is no wild alpaca, and the tame animal is dependent on manÉIt must have taken ages to bring the silken fleeces to such perfection. There is thus good reason for assigning very great antiquity to the civilisation of the megalithic people. Another deduction from the premise is that there must have been a dense population for working quarries, moving the cyclopean monoliths from a distance and placing them, as well as for cultivation and the provision of supplies for the workers. This suggests extensive dominions and some movement of the people"(1910d: 30-31). 7  Squier had this to say about the ruins of Paramonga situated in the lower Fortaleza Valley on the North Central Coast. "In this neighborhood are a number of remarkable monumentsÉthe most important of which, situated two leagues from the Rio de la Barranca and one from the sea, and not far from the pueblo of La Fortaleza, are the ruins of Paramanca. They are describedÉ'as occupying the summit of a hill quadrangular in form, consisting of three lines of mud-walls, the interior ones dominating the exterior. The greatest exterior length is nine hundred feet, the length of the inner wall six hundred feet. Within the latter are remains of houses separated by narrow streets. Ninety feet from each angle of the exterior wall are bastionsÉflanking the curtains'. These ruins are describedÉas a 'large square mass of mud-work, diminishing towards the summit, and forming large steps. Although undoubtedly of great antiquity, the works do not appear to have suffered materially, as the sides are square, and the edges sharp. They are partly covered by a kind of plaster, on which are seen the uncouth colored representations of birds and beasts.' There is a tradition that this fortress was erected to commemorate the peace between the Inca Capac-Yupanqui and the King of Chimu, who had his capital near Truxillo, far to the northward. But it is more probable that it was a frontier work, defining the limits of rule of the princes of Chimu as against the chiefs occupying the valleys of Huaura, Pacasmayo, Chillon, Rimac, and Lurin (Pachacamac), to the southward" (Squier 1877: 102). It is unknown if or when Tello visited the ruins of Paramonga. However, the reader may recall that in 1915 Tello found stratigraphic evidence for a Nazca layer of occupation beneath Inca and Tiahuanaco layers of deposition at the ruins of Tambo de Mora (Tello 1922: 243). It 594   and stone. The use of sculpted human and feline heads predominated in the Callejon de Huaylas, at Aija, at Chavin de Huantar, in Cuzco, and at Tiahuanaco. There was represented everywhere an anthropomorphic feline deity that was carved in stone more simply in the Callejon de Huaylas and more complexly both inside the ruins of Chavin de Huantar and on the pottery of the Chicama Valley. This pottery also evidenced scenes of human sacrifice undertaken in order to ensure subsistence (life). At the same time this anthropomorphic and idealized deity was the most important divinity (in the pantheon) of the Nazca, the Tiahuanaco, and the Inca (ibid: xv-xvii). There was evidence for highland influence going to the coast during this Middle Period of cultural development in Peru but not vice versa. Hence, the highly developed Chicama and Nazca cultures appear to have been derivative of highland archaic culture. In the Huarmey Valley a cultural layer had been identified that was derivative of Aija and the Callejon de Huaylas as well as other cultural layers derivative of Tiahuanaco and Cuzco. Chavin and mixed (pre) Inca-Tiahuanaco were the predominant cultures during this Middle Period. During his subsequent (Third Epoch) High Culture Era/Period there were three distinct movements of highland cultural influences to the coast. From earliest to latest these influences were (1) from Chavin to the Chicama Valley (on the North Coast), (2) from a Tiahuanaco-derivative culture to the Central Coast 8  and the Department of Ancash, and (3) from Tiahuanaco-Inca throughout Peru (ibid: xviii-xix). The reader may feel a sense of bewilderment at this point. Tello had not yet finely honed his arguments and he certainly was all over the map in this short discussion sans illustration. Fortunately in 1921 he published a greatly expanded version of this paper that was illustrated. 9  Fortunately, too, he published a translated version in a North would appear, then, that what Tello was doing here was defining the southern limit of his North Coast (Chimu) culture and the northern limit of his South Coast Nazca culture. These he had defined as representative of two distinct art styles that had developed in Peru during his First Epoch. This fact helps to explain why Tello only represented the early to late Tallanes, Chimu, Chancay, Ica, and Nazca cultures on his chronological diagram. Apparently Tello considered the cultures through time in the intermediary central region of Peru as more or less representative of one of these two basic cultures/art styles. One is left to wonder about Uhle's response to Tello's decision to exclude mention of Rimac culture. 8  Here Tello states that Uhle erred in naming 'epigonal' the Tiahuanaco-influenced pottery that he found at Pachacamac. This same style of pottery, Tello wrote, was found by he and his team in the Huarmey Valley as well as throughout the Department of Ancash (Tello 1920: xix). Unfortunately, Tello did not elaborate on his disagreement with Uhle. Uhle had written "For lack of a more fitting term, we designated as the Epigone style that cultural type which, although closely related to the style of Tiahuanaco, is inferior to its famous prototype in almost every respectÉThe decorative designs of numerous vessels doubtless have some religious significance. The sceptre-holding figure is identical with the image of the divinity pictured in the Gate relief and elsewhere; the condor has a mythological meaning in Peru and the running and flying condor much more so, as it is always pictured in connection with mythological figuresÉAll this is easily explained, when it is remembered that these vessels were mostly used with the 'chicha' {maize beer} drinking at religious festivals, and were for that reason decorated with designs having some religious significance. During this Epigone period religious ideas still found expression in the typical mythological figures which the classic period of the Tiahuanaco style bequeathed to the following generations, and we are indebted to the religious customs of these Peruvians for many specimens which demonstrate the close connection between this period and the preceding one" (Uhle 1903b: 26). 9  This was apparently first published in the July 28, 1921 edition of La Prensa under the title, "La raza peruana y la civilizaci—n". Subsequently it was republished as a brochure or booklet under the title 595   American journal in 1922. The reader may note some differences in what he wrote in 1921 relative to what he wrote in 1920, but his basic message was the same. The following comments and quotes are based upon and come directly from, respectively, the translated version of his 1921 publication. In his introduction Tello noted that he was presenting an outline for a new theory regarding Peru's 'primitive cultures' and in so doing he was carrying forward the work of Max Uhle "who may properly be considered the founder of the science of archaeology in Peru" (Tello 1922: 238). Having touched upon this most important base, Tello then explained that Peru was a land of contrasts that included very different coastal, highland, and tropical forest zones. Peru's varied topography, its variations of climate, altitude, flora, and fauna had contributed to the development of multiple srcin theories. That is, such variety had "forced us to consider as limited, in the geo-ethnic sense, regions that give rise to different racial types of culture" (ibid). Accordingly "the modern anthropologists down to Hrdlicka agree on the existence of the brachycephalic {short headed} type in the Costa and the dolichocephalic {long headed} type in the Sierra; to which ought to be added the not very well differentiated one of the Floresta" (ibid: 239). Hence, distinct racial types had been put forward for archaeological cultures on the coast and in the highlands by anthropologists including Hrdlicka while Tello suggested that a third could be identified (by them) for the tropical forest. 10   "Introducci—n a la Hist—ria Antigua Peruana." Likely still recovering from his recent loss of the directorship of the national museum of archaeology in Lima, Means published the following review of Tello's new work. "The author of this little brochure is undoubtedly Peru's most active and best-prepared anthropologist. He has training not only in medicine and physical anthropology, but also in archaeology, and the good work done by him in those sciences has won him a high reputation. But the present work will add no lustre to it" (Means 1922: 190). 10  Tello was referring here to a paper that Hrdlicka had presented at the Washington D.C. meeting of the International Congress of Americanists in which he had dealt with specifics regarding three distinct populations that had migrated to the Americas from Asia. In the published version Hrdlicka wrote, "The newcomers, though all belonging to the same main race, were evidently not strictly homogenous, but represented several distinct sub-types of the yellow-brown people, with differences in culture and language. The first of these sub-types to come over wasÉthe dolichocephalic Indian, represented in North America today by the great Algonquian, Iroquois, Siouan, and Shoshoean stocks, farther south by the Pima-Aztec tribes, and in South America by many branches extending over large parts of that continent from Venezuela and the coast of Brazil to Tierra del Fuego {Chile}. Next cameÉthe 'Toltec' type, quite as Indian as the other, but marked by brachycephaly. This type settled along the north-west coast, in the central and eastern mound region, in the Gulf States, the Antilles, Mexico (including Yucatan), over much of Central America, reaching finally the coast of Peru and other parts of northern South America. Still later, and when America was already well peopled, there cameÉthe Eskimo and the Athapascan Indians" (1917: 568). It will become clear later that this reference by Tello was actually a subtle (?) criticism of Hrdlicka and like-minded physical anthropologists. Tello felt they had over-analyzed the skulls of ancient Peruvians (and ancient Americans as a whole) in order to create distinctive highland and coastal populations that he felt did not exist in reality. Had Tello and Hrdlicka clashed on this point in the past? How far back in their relationship? It does seem likely that during their 'joint' field expedition early in 1913 they would have had numerous opportunities to discuss and put into practice the process of sorting human skeletal remains that Hrdlicka had begun on skulls in museums prior to his first collecting trip to Peru in 1910. Hrdlicka read a paper at the 1910 meeting of the International Congress of Americanists held in Mexico City, in which he first offered details on the nature of his findings in the field in Peru that year. He included in this paper acknowledgement that he had conducted museum research prior to this field research. He wrote that the "accessions of Bolivian and Peruvian skeletal material in the principal American museums during the past 596


Jun 12, 2019
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