Date of Award
Lawernce Conyers, Ph.D.
Cerro Santa Rita, Chao Valley, Gallinazo, Hilltop, Moche, Peru
The Site of Cerro Santa Rita is located in the mid-valley region of the Chao Valley on the North Cast of Peru. Occupied by people during the Gallinazo, Moche and Chimú time periods, Cerro Santa Rita fulfilled a role similar to that of a huaca, or temple. The people of pre-Hispanic Peru were deep set in their traditions, many of these traditions are still practiced by Peruvians today. The traditions of ancestor veneration and feasting are no exceptions to this. Cerro Santa Rita was a burial complex that had plazas and courtyards associated with the tombs of ancestors. Not as elaborate or large as the huacas to the north in the Moche and Chicama Valleys, which served as regional, administrative and religious centers, Cerro Santa Rita was more oriented to local ceremony. Ceramic and biological evidence suggests that parts of Cerro Santa Rita were unitized as designated areas for food and beverage production, these areas lack plazas and demonstrate a limited variability in ceramic morphologies. These practices demonstrate that public ceremony and feasts provided the social cohesion on a local level that was required in the outlying valleys, such as the Chao. This was necessary if Gallinazo, Moche and Chimú power centers to the north were going to maintain access to and influence over trade networks.
Busch, Richard A., "Hilltop Archaeology: Ceremony and Ritual at the Site of Cerro Santa Rita, Chao Valley, Peru" (2009). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 103.
Received from ProQuest
Richard A. Busch