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CHIMU: Imperial Riches from the Desert of Peru

Yvonne Fleitman and Alisa Baginski

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English edition only

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This volume sheds light on a fascinating yet relatively unknown chapter of cultural history: the splendid legacy of the Kingdom of Chimor, which flourished from the 10th to the 15th centuries in Peru. Also known as the Chimu Empire, it gave rise to a sophisticated society boasting monumental architecture and exquisitely crafted artworks and consumer goods. The book encompasses 370 artistic treasures from the Museum’s holding in Precolumbian art – textiles, headdresses and featherwork, silver and gold ceremonial masks and vessels, ceramics, and jewelry – including a rare collection of objects from an aristocratic tomb in one of the capital’s royal compounds. Many of these treasures were presented in a 2006 exhibition – the first comprehensive exhibition of its kind worldwide – dedicated to Chimu and two neighboring civilizations that came under its sway: the Lambayeque and the Chancay. Exquisite photographs, often full-page, accompany texts that provide broad historical background as well as specific explanations, exposing to academics and lay readers alike the glorious legacy of ancient Peruvian cultures.

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