Civilizations in America

Chavín


   The earliest urban culture on the South American continent was the Chavín culture, so-called because its major site was found in the area of Chavín de Huantar. The Chavín culture arose in the highlands of northern Peru around 1000 BC—about the same time as the Olmecs in Central America&3151;and thrived until 500 BC. We know almost nothing about the Chavín; like the Olmecs, they worshipped a jaguar-man god which suggests there might have been some kind of cultural contact between the two. For five hundred years, the Chavín culture dominated Peruvian culture during a period we call Early Horizon (1000-200 BC).

   In the centuries following the decline of the Chaví known as the Early Intermediate Period (100-600 AD), the Andean highlands and Peruvian coastline was dominated by regional cultures: in the north, the Moche, and in the south, the Nazca

Richard Hooker



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1996, Richard Hooker
Updated 11-15-97