Ancient murals uncovered in Peruvian temple

  • 13 November 2007

Colourful murals unearthed from the ruins of a 4,000-year-old temple in Peru are thought by archaeologists to be the oldest in the Americas.

The temple, which has been named Ventarron, was discovered in the Lambayeque valley, a desert area in the north of the country.

It was made out of bricks from the sediment of local rivers, and features murals in white, red and yellow.

Excavation leader Walter Alva said: ‘What is surprising is the construction methods, the architectural design and, most of all, the existence of murals that could be the oldest in the Americas.’

He added that it provided evidence that the community which built the temple was an ‘advanced civilisation’.

‘There is no other monument in existence in the north of Peru that has these characteristics.’

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