Chachapoya Mummies
Human Mummy
Biographical Information
Name(s) Chachapoya mummies
Age 500 years old
Sex both
Status unknown
Height unknown
Culture Inca
Date(s) 9th and 15th century
Current Location
Location Leymebamba Museum
Catalog # unknown

The Chachapoya are related to the Inca. These people were the original inhabitants of cloud forests of northern Peru. Their territories were conquered by the Incas in the 15th century. In 1997, the tombs of Leymebamba, near the Lagoon of Condores, hundreds of Chachapoya mummies were discovered in six chullpas (stone funerary towers)


Evidence of mummification could be seen on the mummified individuals based on embalming of the skin, internal organs as well as the clear removal of the anus. The facial cavities had been filled with cotton. The mummified individuals were placed in a flexed, seated position wrapped in a bundle of cloth. They gave their dead a great importance, considering them still part of the living population to the extent that dead chiefs could even participate in rituals or meetings. The ancient peoples would usually go visit the dead in their tombs. They would change their wrappings and would take them food and drinks.


"When the Incas conquered this area, they replaced the funerary pattern. They emptied the mausoleums [of the pre-Inca Chachapoya dead]"


A Chachapoya mummy from Peru, dating between the 9th and 15th century, found in 1877 and exhibited in Paris, at the Trocadero Ethnographic Museum in 1882. It is believed by some the mummy might have inspired contemporary artists, such as Gauguin and Munch.

The Laguna de los Condores is one of only two known large Inca burial sites to have escaped destruction by Spanish conquistadors.

External Links


Deem, J. (2016). Chachapoya Mummies. Retrieved from <>

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