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The Inca Empire originated on the shores of Lake Titicaca Photo: pixabay.com
Researchers from Peru traced the origin of the Incas, the largest pre-Hispanic civilization in America. Researchers were helped by the DNA of the descendants of the ancient emperors. The DNA test confirmed the ancient legends.
From the ancient capital of Cuzco, the Incas controlled a huge empire for several centuries, which stretched from the present Pasto in Colombia to the Maule River in Chile. The state fell as a result of the invasion of the Spaniards.
There are two legends about the first rulers of this empire. According to one, they came from the shores of Lake Titicaca, in the Puno region of Peru. The other identifies the first Incas as the Ayar brothers from Mount Pakaritambo in the Cusco region.
Scientists from the University of Lima in San Martín de Porresit decided to test the ancient legends with DNA. The mummies of the rulers of the Incas did not survive, probably, they were destroyed by the conquistadors. Therefore, researchers studied the genetic profiles of their possible descendants – 3,000 residents of both places. After several years of work, 200 people identified as having genetic similarities with representatives of the ancient nobility were identified.
According to scientists, the study showed that the rulers of the Incas descended from two lines: peoples living in the area of Lake Titicaca and around Mount Pakaritambo, which confirms the legends.
Probably the first wave of migration moved from the shores of Lake Titicaca and reached the mountain Pakaritambo. And already from here in several decades the ancient Incas moved on and founded the state of Tahuantinsuyu known today as the Inca Empire. It also included the mountain peak Machu Picchu in modern Peru – now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
According to the Internet portal Phys.org, the work of researchers does not stop. Now they want to return to the past. To do this, they have to check the DNA of ancient relics, such as mummies, "to compile a complete picture of the origin of the most important before the Spanish civilization". The task is rather complicated.
Spanish conquistadors during the invasion and conversion of local residents to Christianity mercilessly destroyed the mummies, considering them a manifestation of paganism. However, they can still be found sometimes. For example, recently an archaeological expedition of the Universe Libre de Bruxelles (Belgium), during excavations in Pachacamac, Peru, discovered an intact mummy in particularly good condition.
"Discoveries like this are extremely scarce, and this mummy is incredibly well preserved", – note the archaeologists. According to them, the dating, the area in which it was discovered, and the type of the tomb suggest that this man was buried between 1000 and 1200 years of our era.