Templo Blanco de Kotosh amb l'edifici del Templo de las Manos darrera06.jpg
Partial view of the site.
Location in Peru
Location in Peru
Location in Peru
Location Peru
CulturesKotosh Religious Tradition, Chavín culture

Kotosh is an archaeological site near the town of Huánuco, Peru, consisting of a series of buildings comprising six periods of continuous occupation.[1]


Three cultural phases which preceded the Chavin culture were identified at Kotosh,

  1. Kotosh
  2. Wairajirca
  3. Mito[2]

Kotosh Period

The Kotosh Period culture stratum was situated directly beneath the Chavin culture stratum.

At this stage, maize cultivation has appeared.[3]

Some Kotosh elements show links with the Chavin culture. For example; stirrup spouts, plain rocker stampings, and curvilinear ceramic designs. There are also similarities in black paint on red ceramics. Kotosh Black Polished Incised pottery is similar to Classical Chavin pottery.[4]

Wairajirca Period

This is when the first pottery appeared. Wayrajirca pottery was originally found at its type site Wayrajirca, and it is also known from elsewhere in the northern highlands.

It is characterized by the polished brown and black styles decorated with incisions and post-firing paint. The designs are simple and geometric; anthropomorphic figures be added at later periods.

The Kotosh Period strongly maintained the traditions of the preceding Wairajirca Period, including the ceramic tradition.

Mito period

Terracota "Crossed arms" from Kotosh, 1800 BC

This was the earliest identified cultural period, which was preceramic. During this period, The Temple of the Crossed Hands was first built. The image of crossed arms is characteristic for the Kotosh temple iconography.[5][6]

Some Lauricocha culture stone tools were found in this period.

See also


  1. ^ "Kotosh -Templo De Las Manos Cruzadas" (in Spanish). MINCETUR. Retrieved 2018-11-11.
  2. ^ Seiichi IZUMI, Pedro J. CUCULIZA, Chiaki KANO, INTRODUCTION, Bulletin No.3: EXCAVATIONS AT SHILLACOTO, HUANUCO, PERU. Archived 2003-01-13 at the Wayback Machine The University Museum, University of Tokyo, 1972
  3. ^ Encyclopedic Dictionary of Archaeology: Kotosh Springer Science & Business Media, 2000 ISBN 1475751338
  4. ^ Izumi and Sono, 1963, p. 155
  5. ^ "Templo de las Manos Cruzadas de Kotosh". Absolut Viajes (in Spanish). Retrieved 28 March 2020.
  6. ^ "Huanuco tourism". Veperu (in Spanish). 2006. Archived from the original on 1 January 2010. Retrieved 28 March 2020.


  • Del Busto Duthurburu, José Antonio: Perú preincaico, pp. 56–58. Colección de obras escogidas de José Antonio del Busto. Lima, Empresa Editora El Comercio S.A., 2011. ISBN 978-612-306-033-6
  • Kauffmann Doig, Federico: Historia y arte del Perú antiguo. Vol. 1, pp. 136–138. Lima, Ediciones PEISA, 2002. ISBN 9972-40-213-4
  • Kaulicke, Peter: El Perú Antiguo I. Los períodos arcaico y formativo, pp. 38. Colección Historia del Perú, editada por la Empresa Editora El Comercio S.A. Lima, 2010. ISBN 978-612-4069-86-4

External links

  • Introduction to Kotosh site (in Spanish, includes illustrations)

Coordinates: 9°55′51″S 76°16′46″W / 9.93083°S 76.27944°W / -9.93083; -76.27944

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