The geographical region of the culture was formed by the sedentary fishermen who inhabited the south Peru and pacific coastal region of the current northern Chile. The humans were settled in the arid region on the coast because of fresh water presence. The culture lasts from 9,000 to 3,500 years BP which was 7,000 to 1,500 BC. The area of chinchorro culture was influenced by the Andean Plateau in 4,000 BP due to which the agriculture was adopted by the chinchorro culture, and after that, the culture came under the influence of Tiwanaku culture. The culture is named after the beach of chinchorro. The chinchorro culture was spread across the arid coastal regions of the Atacama Desert which is from llo, and from southern Peru to Antofagasta which is present in northern Chile. There was various site of Archeology around Arica and Caleta Cameroons.
The people of chinchorro were the expert in fishing, and they made extensive and sophisticated assemblage tools of fishing. They had efficient fishing gear for example fishing hooks which were made of shells and cactuses, and stone weights, and stone weights for nets which are made from mesh fabrics. The people become skilled weavers of mats and baskets. The type sites of chinchorro were located in Arica, Chile. The type site was discovered by German archaeologist named Max Uhle in the twenty century. The various archaeological sites were discovered along with the coast. In Peru, Quebrada Jaguay and Quebrada Tachahuay were studied by the archaeologists. Inland in Chile, they are also other sites of Las Conchas and Achas. Quebrada Jaguay is the oldest site which is dated to 11,000 BC. The culture of chinchorro was developed by the earlier settlements which are determined by arguing of scholars, and the research is still going on the culture of chinchorro.
The Chichorro mummy was founded on the site of Archas. The chinchorro culture has discovered the first mummies (Hutchison et al., 2013). The practices of mummification and funerary practices of chinchorro are very famous from the culture of chinchorro. The popular site of Monte Verde has to be mentioned in this context which is near the Chilean coastline. The mummies of Chinchorro were older than the ancient Egyptians. The mummies of chinchorro were going back to 7,000 or 9,000 BC. The DNA of mummies was recovered by the researchers. The duration of culture was several thousand years, and it evolves and adopted over the time period. The culture of chinchorro was ended near 3500 BP.
The knowledge of chinchorro culture was contributed by the Dr. Bernardo Arriaza who was the Chilean physical anthropologist and his work was published in the journal Chinchorro. Later the work was published in the National Geographic magazine which was translated into various languages. The earliest tattoo was founded on the male mummy of chinchorro by the Americans. The local cultural development in the phase of Azapa was the translation period which was started in the phase of Alto Ramirez and ended in the phase of chinchorro culture. It took place in the Azapa valley which is near to the coast. The cultural changes were influenced by the immigrants from the Altiplano. These changes lead to the adoption of agricultural activities in the 3,000 BP, and it also includes the introduction of ceramics, but their group doesn't mummify their dead for a long period. The study on the influence of wankarani culture and the early pukara culture was done by various archeologists. The chinchorro may coexist with the emergent Andean tradition in the transitional phase. The mummies of chinchorro show the surprising level of sophistication.
According to the study conducted by the physical anthropologist named Bernardo Arriaza the elaborate process is followed by the people of chinchorro to mummify the dead. The clues related to the ancient climate were determined by the scientist, and they find that the climate became less harsh in the region before the people of chinchorro mummify their dead's. It helps to generate more food and freshwater which enables to grow the population. According to the ecologist Pablo Marquet once the people die in chinchorro than it mummifies after the death. The mummies of chinchorro remain individual from the South America which is founded in southern Peru and northern Chile. The preservation of dead’s are done by the people of Chinchorro which is started about 7,000 years ago, and it becomes one of the wonders of Andean archaeology. The Chinchorro culture is based on hunting, fishing, and collecting of substances. The earliest known site of Chinchorro culture was whilst dated 5,000 BC (Newman et al., 2016). The mummies of Chinchorro culture were identified by the German archeologist in the year 1917 named Max Uhle. The researcher shows then the mummies were further spread along the coast and concentrated between the Camerones and Arica. The largest and best-preserved mummy was found in the year 1983 which was discovered by the Aruca water company at the time of laying a new water pipeline. The mummies were categorized into three categories by the Whilst Uhle and then further researches were done on the basis of this categorization. Two most common methods used for mummification, namely, red mummy and black mummy which were used by the people of Chinchorro culture. The techniques of the black mummy were used from 5000 to 3000 BC, and the technique of red mummy was used from about 2000 to 2500 BC (Dageförde et al., 2014). The spiritual belief is reflected from the mummies of Chinchorro culture which is extracted from the reason for the mummification of dead bodies. The impressive feature of Chinchorro mummies includes that accorded of Chinchorro people regardless of their age, status, and others. The mummification of the entire members includes men, women, children, and others which show the proven of egalitarian preservation decision of the Chinchorro culture. The egalitarian practices of funerary are due to changes in the climate because the desert of Atacama is one of the driest regions on the earth. The dead bodies in the Chinchorro culture were buried in the shallow graves due to which the dead bodies are partially exposed by the wind (DeAraujo et al., 2016). The level of seawater was increased which helps to increase the marine food and seawater which is the reason for the increase in population in the Chinchorro culture around 6000 to 7000 BC. The research of maintaining the egalitarian without hierarchy is still ongoing by anthropologists. The people of Chinchorro culture were called after the name of beach Chile which is the first evidence of the culture. The diet of ninety percent of people of Chinchorro culture was seafood which is founded by shell midden and bone chemistry. The Chinchorro culture has distinguished itself from other ancient cultures through the preservation of dead bodies. The Chinchorro culture performed mummification of all the members of the society which become significant for the anthropologist. The natural mummification process is used by the Chinchorro culture, and it is also called a Acha man (Dillehay et al., 2012).
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Newman, W. C., Chivukula, S., & Grandhi, R. (2016). From Mystics to Modern Times: A History of Craniotomy & Religion. World neurosurgery, 92, 148-150.
Dillehay, T. D. (2012). Selective complexity and adaptive mortuary behavior. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 109(37), 14722-14723.
DeAraujo, A., Vasanthakumar, A., Sepulveda, M., Standen, V., Arriaza, B., & Mitchell, R. (2016). Investigation of the recent microbial degradation of the skin of the Chinchorro Mummies of Ancient Chile. Journal of Cultural Heritage.
Dageförde, K. L., Vennemann, M., & Rühli, F. J. (2014). Evidence-based palaeopathology: Meta-analysis of Pubmed®-listed scientific studies on pre-Columbian, South American mummies. HOMO-Journal of Comparative Human Biology, 65(3), 214-231.