What Was It Like to Live During the Peak of the Chimu Empire

Imagine walking around the historic city of Chan Chan

By CyArk

Laser scanning the walls which are believed to represent fishing nets at Chan Chan by CyArkCyArk

What did the city look like?

Architecture at Chan Chan is characterised by buildings constructed using pre-prepared sections of poured mud or adobe.    

Chan Chan detailsCyArk

Externally, they were decorated with geometric and maritime motifs. 

Chan Chan Palacio TschudiCyArk

 Internally, textiles and basketwork would have hung on the walls.      

Huaca de la Luna painted walls, Chan Chan by CyArkCyArk

Chimú architecture is intricately connected to mythology; specifically, a belief that the sun populated the world by creating three eggs – gold for the ruling elite, silver for their wives, and copper for everyone else.    

Chan ChanCyArk

Where would you live?

The social division is visible in the layout of Chan Chan, where the elite lived in the citadels, while the majority of the population lived and worked in small irregular agglutinated rooms which also served as workshops.   

These craftspeople were forbidden from entering the citadels.     

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Find out more about ICOMOS' efforts to increase engagement of cultural heritage in climate action here.

Credits: Story

Milagros Flores, ICOMOS and President, ICOMOS International Scientific Committee on Fortifications and Military Heritage.  

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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