Architecture is both the process and the product of planning and constructing buildings or any other structures. Architectural works, in the material form of buildings, are perceived as cultural symbols and as works of art. Historical civilizations are identified with their surviving architectural achievements. Architecture is both the process and the product of planning and constructing buildings and other physical structures. Architecture can mean: A general term to describe other physical structures; the art and science of designing buildings and nonbuilding structures. The style of design and method of construction of buildings and other physical structures. A unifying or coherent form or structure. Knowledge of art, science and humanity; the design activity of the architect, from the macro-level to the micro-level. The practice of the architect, where architecture means offering or rendering professional services in connection with the design and construction of buildings, or built environments.
The earliest surviving written work on the subject of architecture is De architectura, by the Roman architect Vitruvius in the early 1st century AD. According to Vitruvius, a good building should satisfy the three principles of firmitas, venustas known by the original translation – firmness and delight. An equivalent in modern English would be: Durability – a building should stand up robustly and remain in good condition. Utility – it should be suitable for the purposes for which it is used. Beauty – it should be aesthetically pleasing. According to Vitruvius, the architect should strive to fulfill each of these three attributes as well as possible. Leon Battista Alberti, who elaborates on the ideas of Vitruvius in his treatise, De Re Aedificatoria, saw beauty as a matter of proportion, although ornament played a part. For Alberti, the rules of proportion were those that governed the idealised human figure, the Golden mean; the most important aspect of beauty was, therefore, an inherent part of an object, rather than something applied superficially, was based on universal, recognisable truths.
The notion of style in the arts was not developed until the 16th century, with the writing of Vasari: by the 18th century, his Lives of the Most Excellent Painters and Architects had been translated into Italian, French and English. In the early 19th century, Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin wrote Contrasts that, as the titled suggested, contrasted the modern, industrial world, which he disparaged, with an idealized image of neo-medieval world. Gothic architecture, Pugin believed, was the only "true Christian form of architecture." The 19th-century English art critic, John Ruskin, in his Seven Lamps of Architecture, published 1849, was much narrower in his view of what constituted architecture. Architecture was the "art which so disposes and adorns the edifices raised by men... that the sight of them" contributes "to his mental health and pleasure". For Ruskin, the aesthetic was of overriding significance, his work goes on to state that a building is not a work of architecture unless it is in some way "adorned".
For Ruskin, a well-constructed, well-proportioned, functional building needed string courses or rustication, at the least. On the difference between the ideals of architecture and mere construction, the renowned 20th-century architect Le Corbusier wrote: "You employ stone and concrete, with these materials you build houses and palaces:, construction. Ingenuity is at work, but you touch my heart, you do me good. I am happy and I say: This is beautiful; that is Architecture". Le Corbusier's contemporary Ludwig Mies van der Rohe said "Architecture starts when you put two bricks together. There it begins." The notable 19th-century architect of skyscrapers, Louis Sullivan, promoted an overriding precept to architectural design: "Form follows function". While the notion that structural and aesthetic considerations should be subject to functionality was met with both popularity and skepticism, it had the effect of introducing the concept of "function" in place of Vitruvius' "utility". "Function" came to be seen as encompassing all criteria of the use and enjoyment of a building, not only practical but aesthetic and cultural.
Nunzia Rondanini stated, "Through its aesthetic dimension architecture goes beyond the functional aspects that it has in common with other human sciences. Through its own particular way of expressing values, architecture can stimulate and influence social life without presuming that, in and of itself, it will promote social development.' To restrict the meaning of formalism to art for art's sake is not only reactionary. Among the philosophies that have influenced modern architects and their approach to building design are rationalism, structuralism, poststructuralism, phenomenology. In the late 20th century a new concept was added to those included in the compass of both structure and function, the consideration of sustainability, hence sustainable architecture. To satisfy the contemporary ethos a building should be constructed in a manner, environmentally friendly in terms of the production of its materials, its impact upon the natural and built environment of its surrounding area and the demands that it makes upon non-sustainable power sources for heating, cooling and waste management and lighting
Peru the Republic of Peru, is a country in western South America. It is bordered in the north by Ecuador and Colombia, in the east by Brazil, in the southeast by Bolivia, in the south by Chile, in the west by the Pacific Ocean. Peru is a megadiverse country with habitats ranging from the arid plains of the Pacific coastal region in the west to the peaks of the Andes mountains vertically extending from the north to the southeast of the country to the tropical Amazon Basin rainforest in the east with the Amazon river. Peruvian territory was home to several ancient cultures. Ranging from the Norte Chico civilization in the 32nd century BC, the oldest civilization in the Americas and one of the five cradles of civilization, to the Inca Empire, the largest state in pre-Columbian America, the territory now including Peru has one of the longest histories of civilization of any country, tracing its heritage back to the 4th millennia BCE; the Spanish Empire conquered the region in the 16th century and established a viceroyalty that encompassed most of its South American colonies, with its capital in Lima.
Peru formally proclaimed independence in 1821, following the military campaigns of José de San Martín and Simón Bolívar, the decisive battle of Ayacucho, Peru secured independence in 1824. In the ensuing years, the country enjoyed relative economic and political stability, which ended shortly before the War of the Pacific with Chile. Throughout the 20th century, Peru endured armed territorial disputes, social unrest, internal conflicts, as well as periods of stability and economic upswing. Alberto Fujimori was elected to the presidency in 1990. Fujimori left the presidency in 2000 and was charged with human rights violations and imprisoned until his pardon by President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski in 2017. After the president's regime, Fujimori's followers, called Fujimoristas, have caused political turmoil for any opposing faction in power causing Pedro Pablo Kuczynski to resign in March 2018; the sovereign state of Peru is a representative democratic republic divided into 25 regions. It is classified as an emerging market with a high level of human development and an upper middle income level with a poverty rate around 19 percent.
It is one of the region's most prosperous economies with an average growth rate of 5.9% and it has one of the world's fastest industrial growth rates at an average of 9.6%. Its main economic activities include mining, manufacturing and fishing; the country forms part of The Pacific Pumas, a political and economic grouping of countries along Latin America's Pacific coast that share common trends of positive growth, stable macroeconomic foundations, improved governance and an openness to global integration. Peru ranks high in social freedom. Peru has a population of 32 million, which includes Amerindians, Europeans and Asians; the main spoken language is Spanish, although a significant number of Peruvians speak Quechua or other native languages. This mixture of cultural traditions has resulted in a wide diversity of expressions in fields such as art, cuisine and music; the name of the country may be derived from Birú, the name of a local ruler who lived near the Bay of San Miguel, Panama City, in the early 16th century.
When his possessions were visited by Spanish explorers in 1522, they were the southernmost part of the New World yet known to Europeans. Thus, when Francisco Pizarro explored the regions farther south, they came to be designated Birú or Perú. An alternative history is provided by the contemporary writer Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, son of an Inca princess and a conquistador, he said the name Birú was that of a common Indian happened upon by the crew of a ship on an exploratory mission for governor Pedro Arias de Ávila, went on to relate more instances of misunderstandings due to the lack of a common language. The Spanish Crown gave the name legal status with the 1529 Capitulación de Toledo, which designated the newly encountered Inca Empire as the province of Peru. Under Spanish rule, the country adopted the denomination Viceroyalty of Peru, which became Republic of Peru after independence; the earliest evidences of human presence in Peruvian territory have been dated to 9,000 BC. Andean societies were based on agriculture, terracing.
Organization relied on reciprocity and redistribution because these societies had no notion of market or money. The oldest known complex society in Peru, the Norte Chico civilization, flourished along the coast of the Pacific Ocean between 3,000 and 1,800 BC; these early developments were followed by archaeological cultures that developed around the coastal and Andean regions throughout Peru. The Cupisnique culture which flourished from around 1000 to 200 BC along what is now Peru's Pacific Coast was an example of early pre-Incan culture; the Chavín culture that developed from 1500 to 300 BC was more of a religious than a political phenomenon, with their religious centre in Chavín de Huantar. After the decline of the Chavin culture around the beginning of the 1st century AD, a series of localized and specialized cultures rose and fell
History of Peru
The history of Peru spans 4 millennia, extending back through several stages of cultural development in the mountain region and the lakes. Peru was home to the Norte Chico civilization, the oldest civilization in the Americas and one of the six oldest in the world, to the Inca Empire, the largest and most advanced state in Pre-Columbian America, it was conquered by the Spanish Empire in the 16th century, which established a Viceroyalty with jurisdiction over most of its South American domains. The nation declared independence from Spain in 1821, but consolidated only after the Battle of Ayacucho, three years later. Hunting tools dating back to more than 11,000 years ago have been found inside the caves of Pachacamac, Telarmachay and Lauricocha; some of the oldest civilizations appeared circa 6000 BC in the coastal provinces of Chilca and Paracas, in the highland province of Callejón de Huaylas. Over the following three thousand years, inhabitants switched from nomadic lifestyles to cultivating land, as evidence from sites such as Jiskairumoko and Huaca Prieta demonstrates.
Cultivation of plants such as corn and cotton began, as well as the domestication of animals such as the wild ancestors of the llama, the alpaca and the guinea pig. Inhabitants practiced spinning and knitting of cotton and wool and pottery; as these inhabitants became sedentary, farming allowed them to build settlements and new societies emerged along the coast and in the Andean mountains. The first known city in the Americas was Caral, located in the Supe Valley 200 km north of Lima, it was built in 2500 BC. What is left from the civilization called Norte Chico, is about 30 pyramidal structures built up in receding terraces ending in a flat roof. Caral is one of the world centers of the rise of civilization. In the early 21st century, archeologists have discovered new evidence of ancient pre-Ceramic complex cultures. In 2005 Tom D. Dillehay and his team announced the discovery of three irrigation canals that were 5,400 years old, a possible fourth, 6,700 years old, all in the Zaña Valley in northern Peru, evidence of community activity to support improved agriculture at a much earlier date than believed.
In 2006, Robert Benfer and a research team discovered a 4,200-year-old observatory at Buena Vista, a site in the Andes several kilometers north of present-day Lima. They believe the observatory was related to the society's reliance on agriculture and understanding the seasons; the site includes. In 2007 the archeologist Walter Alva and his team found a 4,000-year-old temple with painted murals at Ventarrón, in the northwest Lambayeque region; the temple contained ceremonial offerings gained from exchange with Peruvian jungle societies, as well as those from the Ecuadoran coast. Such finds show sophisticated, monumental construction requiring large-scale organization of labor, suggesting that hierarchical, complex cultures arose in South America much earlier than scholars had thought. Many other civilizations developed and were absorbed by the most powerful ones such as Kotosh, Paracas, Nasca, Tiwanaku, Lambayeque and Chincha, among others; the Paracas culture emerged on the southern coast around 300 BC.
They are known for their use of vicuña fibers instead of just cotton to produce fine textiles—innovations that did not reach the northern coast of Peru until centuries later. Coastal cultures such as the Moche and Nazca flourished from about 100 BC to about AD 700: the Moche produced impressive metalwork, as well as some of the finest pottery seen in the ancient world, while the Nazca are known for their textiles and the enigmatic Nazca lines; these coastal cultures began to decline as a result of recurring el Niño floods and droughts. In consequence, the Huari and Tiwanaku, who dwelt inland in the Andes became the predominant cultures of the region encompassing much of modern-day Peru and Bolivia, they were succeeded by powerful city-states, such as Chancay and Cajamarca, two empires: Chimor and Chachapoyas culture These cultures developed advanced techniques of cultivation and silver craft, pottery and knitting. Around 700 BC, they appear to have developed systems of social organization that were the precursors of the Inca civilization.
In the highlands, both the Tiahuanaco culture, near Lake Titicaca in both Peru and Bolivia, the Wari culture, near the present-day city of Ayacucho, developed large urban settlements and wide-ranging state systems between 500 and 1000 AD. Not all Andean cultures were willing to offer their loyalty to the Incas as the Incas expanded their empire, many were hostile; the people of the Chachapoyas culture were an example of this, but the Inca conquered and integrated them into their empire. The Incas built dynasty of pre-Columbian America; the Tahuantinsuyo—which is derived from Quechua for "The Four United Regions"—reached its greatest extension at the beginning of the 16th century. It dominated a territory that included: the southwest part of Ecuador, part of Colombia, the northern part of Chile, the northwest part of Argentina; the empire originated from a tribe based in Cusco. Pachacutec wasn't the first Inca, but he was the first ruler to expand the boundaries of the Cusco state- he could be compared to Alexander the great, Julius Caesar and Genghis Khan.
In agriculture, a terrace is a piece of sloped plane, cut into a series of successively receding flat surfaces or platforms, which resemble steps, for the purposes of more effective farming. This type of landscaping is therefore called terracing. Graduated terrace steps are used to farm on hilly or mountainous terrain. Terraced fields decrease both erosion and surface runoff, may be used to support growing crops that require irrigation, such as rice; the Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras have been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of the significance of this technique. Terraced paddy fields are used in rice and barley farming in east and southeast Asia, as well as the Mediterranean and South America. Drier-climate terrace farming is common throughout the Mediterranean Basin, where they are used for vineyards, olive trees, cork oak, etc. In the South American Andes, farmers have used terraces, known as andenes, for over a thousand years to farm potatoes and other native crops.
Terraced farming was developed by the Wari culture and other peoples of the south-central Andes before 1000 AD, centuries before they were used by the Inca, who adopted them. The terraces were built to make the most efficient use of shallow soil and to enable irrigation of crops by allowing runoff to occur through the outlet; the Inca built on these, developing a system of canals and puquios to direct water through dry land and increase fertility levels and growth. These terraced farms are found, they provided the food necessary to support the populations of great Inca cities and religious centres such as Machu Picchu. Terracing is used for sloping terrain. At the seaside Villa of the Papyri in Herculaneum, the villa gardens of Julius Caesar's father-in-law were designed in terraces to give pleasant and varied views of the Bay of Naples. Terraced fields are common in islands with steep slopes; the Canary Islands present a complex system of terraces covering the landscape from the coastal irrigated plantations to the dry fields in the highlands.
These terraces, which are named cadenas, are built with stone walls of skillful design, which include attached stairs and channels. In Old English, a terrace was called a "lynch". An example of an ancient Lynch Mill is in Lyme Regis; the water is directed from a river by a duct along a terrace. This set-up was used in steep hilly areas in the UK. In Japan, some of the 100 Selected Terraced Rice Fields, from Iwate in the north to Kagoshima in the south, are disappearing, but volunteers are helping the farmers both to maintain their traditional methods and for sightseeing purposes. Anden Banaue Rice Terraces Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras Satoyama Terrace garden Terrace Fields around the World
Religion in Peru
Christianity is the largest religion in Peru, with Roman Catholics having the most adherents. The Spanish conquerors not only conquered Peru militarily, but sought to convert the indigenous populations to Christianity. Indigenous Andean religious beliefs and practices persisted, which the Catholic Church sought to suppress. Many churches were built in the visible manifestation of Catholicism; some convents were built on Inca sites. For example, in 1605, some Dominican nuns built the Convent of Santa Catalina in Cuzco atop the site of the "acllahuasi", once home to virginal young women dedicated to serving the ruling Inca. Another convent, the Convent of Santa Clara, was one of the first institutions the conquistadores of Cuzco built for "Indian nobles", the daughters of the indigenous elite whose collaboration made Spain's indirect rule over the Andes possible. At Santa Clara, Inca nobles were to be "raised Christian and to receive'buenas costumbres', shorthand for an education in Spanishness", which included knowledge and literacy.
After graduating from this course in Spanish culture, charges were free to profess vows or leave the convent. Miscegenation was not an issue among Spaniards. Many prominent Spanish men lived with elite Inca women, only to marry Spanish women in life and marry off their Andean partners to less prominent Spaniards; the Peruvian government is allied with the Catholic Church. Article 50 of the Constitution recognizes the Catholic Church's role as "an important element in the historical and moral development of the nation." Catholic clergy and laypersons receive state remuneration in addition to the stipends paid to them by the Church. This applies to the country's 52 bishops, as well as to some priests whose ministries are located in towns and villages along the borders. In addition each diocese receives a monthly institutional subsidy from the Government. An agreement signed with the Vatican in 1980 grants the Catholic Church special status in Peru; the Catholic Church receives preferential treatment in education, tax benefits, immigration of religious workers, other areas, in accordance with the agreement.
So Roman Catholicism could be considered the main religion of Peru. See the following: Roman Catholicism in Peru with Partial list of Catholic universities in Peru. Although the Constitution states that there is freedom of religion, the law mandates that all schools and private, impart religious education as part of the curriculum throughout the education process. Catholicism is the only religion taught in public schools. In addition, Catholic religious symbols are found in all public places. According to the 2017 Census, there were 76% of the population 12+ identifying themselves as Catholics. At the 2017 Census there were 14.1% of the population 12+ identifying themselves as Protestants Evangelicals. In Latin America most Protestants are called Evangelicos because most of them are Evangelical Protestants, while some are traditional Mainline Protestant, they continue to grow faster than the national growth rate. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints claims more than 578,000 members in Peru.
There are 764 congregations that meet in Peru. There are two LDS temples in Peru, one located in La Molina and the other in Trujillo. On October 6, 2012, the LDS church announced a third temple to be built in Arequipa. At the April 3, 2016 General Conference of the LDS church, it was announced that a fourth temple would be built in Los Olivos, Lima; this second temple in Lima will make the city one of the few in the world with two temples. Peru is home to more than 100 stakes of the LDS church. Buddhism was introduced to Peru in 1899 when the ship Sakura Maru arrived at Callao, with 790 people from Japan. Japanese and Korean immigration to Peru during the 19th and 20th Century brought Mahayana Buddhism to Peru, followers of that style of Buddhism remain concentrated within those ethnic groups. While Mahayana remains the largest school of Buddhism in Peru, other schools such as the Diamond form have begun to spread so that Peru has more than 50,000 practicing Buddhists; the Bahá'í Faith in Peru begins with references to Peru in Bahá'í literature as early as 1916, with the first Bahá'ís visiting as early as 1919.
A functioning community wasn't founded in Peru until the 1930s with the beginning of the arrival of coordinated pioneers from the United States which progressed into finding national Peruvian converts and achieved an independent national community in 1961. The Association of Religion Data Archives estimated some 41,000 Bahá'ís in 2005; the statistics for Islam in Peru estimate a total Muslim population of 5,000 based in the capital of Lima, Peru. Seax-Wica was introduced to Peru by Seax Gesith Ariel Phoenice, Witan of the Mimir's Well Seax Coven, Perú in 2001. Other covens were subsequently founded in Arequipa and Tacna
The term Peruvian literature not only refers to literature produced in the independent Republic of Peru, but to literature produced in the Viceroyalty of Peru during the country's colonial period, to oral artistic forms created by diverse ethnic groups that existed in the area during the prehispanic period, such as the Quechua, the Aymara and the Chanka South American native groups. The artistic production of the pre-Hispanic period art produced under the Incan Empire, is unknown. Literature produced in the central-Andean region of modern-day Ecuador, Perú, Bolivia and Chile, is thought to have been transmitted orally alone, though the quipu of the Inka and earlier Andean civilizations casts this into doubt, it consisted of two main poetic forms: harawis --- a form of lyrical poetry---and hayllis--- a form of epic poetry. Both forms described the daily life and rituals of the time, were recited by a poet known as the harawec. Orally transmitted folktales expressed the cosmology of the Andean world, included creation and destruction myths.
Many of these stories have survived until the present, thanks in no small part to the efforts of early chroniclers such as Inca Garcilaso, who rediscovered Quechua poetry, Guamán Poma de Ayala, who preserved mythology. Their inclusion in the "official canon" was a slow process, as they were not viewed with seriousness. For instance, Jose de la Riva Agüero, in his 1905 thesis Character of the Literature of Independent Peru considered the Pre-Hispanic literary tradition "insufficient" and unimportant in the formation of any new literary tradition, it was resurrected from obscurity in the 20th century, by a number of literary scholars and anthropologists who compiled and rescued Pre-Hispanic myths and legends. Among them are: Adolfo Vienrich -'Tarmap Pacha Huaray, compiled in 1905. José María Arguedas, who translated the Huarochirí Manuscript, a 17th-century text on indigenous Andean mythology and religion known as Hombres y dioses de Huarochirí Martin Lienhard -'La voz y su huella. Escritura y conflicto étnico-cultural en América Latina.
1492-1988 1992 Antonio Cornejo Polar -'Escribir en el aire: ensayo sobre la heterogeneidad socio-cultural en las literaturas andinas, 1994 Edmundo Bendezú -'Literatura Quechua, 1980 and La otra literatura, 1986Bendezú affirms that Quechua oral tradition constitutes a marginal system opposed to the dominant Hispanicizing force. He speaks of a great tradition of "enormous textual mass", marginalized and sidelined by the Western scriptural system. Luis Alberto Sánchez, on the other hand, employed elements of the Pre-Hispanic tradition to illustrate his theory of a racially mixed "Creole" literature of both indigenous and Iberian parentage. To this end, he cited chronicles by authors such as Cieza and Garcilaso; the literature of Peru's discovery and conquest includes all works produced in the region during its discovery and conquest by Spain. It can refer to literature produced around this time; the period begins on November 15, 1532 in Cajamarca with the capture of the last Inca lord, Atahualpa.
The principal literary manifestations of this period are in the form of chronicles of discovery, or are epistolary in nature. Major works which explore the literature of this time include: Francisco Carrillo's Enciclopedia histórica de la literatura peruana, various tomes by Raúl Porras Barrenechea which detail the works of the early chroniclers. According to Francisco Carrillo, the early chroniclers could be divided into various groups; the first is the group of chroniclers detailing the conquest. The majority of these were writers and soldiers who were responsible for producing official transcripts of military expeditions. There was a small group of non-official chroniclers or personal diarists who provided unique personal insights on the effort to subdue and colonize the region. Both groups coexisted during the first period of the Peruvian conquest, which took place between 1532 and 1535. For the most part, these chroniclers all wrote from the perspective of the conqueror, whose mission was to "civilize" and "reveal the true faith" to the native peoples of Peru.
Therefore, many of their descriptions and the motivations they ascribe to the indigenous peoples of the region are distorted and in error. Among the official Spanish chroniclers were Francisco Xerez, personal secretary of Pizarro, who wrote the Verdadera relación de la conquista del Perú y provincia del Cuzco llamada la Nueva Castilla, in 1534, he is responsible for Relación Sámano-Xerez of 1528, which details Pizarro's first expeditions of 1525 and 1527. His historical accounts are reiterated by Pedro Sancho de la Hoz, in his La Conquista de Peru of 1534. Another official Spanish chronicler was Fray Gaspar de Carvajal, who produced the Relacion del descubrimiento del famoso río grande de las Amazonas of 1541–1542, which described t
The Andean civilizations were a patchwork of different cultures and peoples that developed in the coastal deserts of Peru. They stretched from the Andes of Colombia southward down the Andes to northern Chile. Archaeologists believe that Andean civilizations first developed on the narrow coastal plain of the Pacific Ocean; the Norte Chico civilization of Peru is the oldest civilization in the Americas, dating back to 3200 BCE. Despite severe environmental challenges, the Andean civilizations domesticated a wide variety of crops, some of which became of worldwide importance; the Andean civilizations were noteworthy for monumental architecture, textile weaving, many unique characteristics of the societies they created. Less than a century prior to the arrival of the Spanish conquerors, the Incas established in Peru, united most of the Andean cultures into one single state which encompasses all of what is called Andean civilization; the Muisca of Colombia and the Timoto Cuica of Venezuela remained outside the Inca orbit.
The Inca Empire was a patchwork of languages and peoples. Spanish rule ended or transformed many elements of the Andean civilizations, notably influencing religion and architecture. Andean civilization was one of five civilizations in the world deemed by scholars to be "pristine", indigenous and not derived from other civilizations. Due to its isolation from other civilizations, the indigenous people of the Andes had to come up with their own unique solutions to environmental and societal challenges. Andean civilization lacked several characteristics distinguishing it from the pristine civilizations in the Old World and from the Mesoamerican cultures. First, most important, Andean civilizations did not have a written language. Instead, their societies used the quipu, a system of knotted and colored strings, to convey information. Few quipus survive and they have never been deciphered. Scholars differ on whether the knotted cords of the quipu were able only to record numerical data or could be used for narrative communication, a true system of writing.
The use of the quipu dates back at least to the Wari Empire and to the much earlier Peruvian civilization of Norte Chico of the third millennium BCE. Andean civilizations lacked wheeled vehicles and draft animals. People on land traveled only by foot and the transport of goods was only by humans or llama, pack animals which could carry loads of up to one-fourth of their weight, a maximum of 45 kilograms. Llamas were not strong enough to be used for plowing or as riding animals for adults. Moreover, Andean civilizations faced severe environmental challenges; the earliest civilizations were on the hyper-arid desert coast of Peru. Agriculture was possible only with irrigation in valleys crossed by rivers coming from the high Andes, plus in a few fog oases called lomas. In the Andes, agriculture was limited by thin soils, cold climate, low or seasonal precipitation, a scarcity of flat land. Freezing temperatures may occur in every month of the year at altitudes of more than 3,000 metres, the homeland of many of the highland Andean civilizations.
The Andean civilizations lacked money. Copper axe-monies and Spondylus shells functioned as mediums of exchange in some areas coastal Ecuador, but most of the Andes area had economies organized on reciprocity and redistribution rather than money and markets; these characteristics were notable during the Inca Empire but originated in much earlier times. Agriculture in South America may have begun in coastal Ecuador with the domestication of squash about 8000 BCE by the Las Vegas culture; some scholars believe that the earliest civilizations on the Peruvian coast relied more upon maritime resources than agriculture during the formative period of their societies. However, as in all civilizations until the late 19th century, agriculture was the principal occupation of the great majority of the people; the greatest contribution of Andean civilization to the modern world has been the plants its people domesticated. Crops grown by the Andeans were unique to the region. Maize, which found its way to the Andes from Mexico, was the most important crop at lower and intermediate elevations.
The Andeans cultivated an estimated 70 different plants as many as were cultivated in all of Europe and Asia. Many of these plants are no longer cultivated, or are minor crops, but important plants which were domesticated in or near the Andes include potatoes, tomatoes, chile peppers, coca, pineapples and several varieties of beans. Animals domesticated in the Andes were llamas and guinea pigs; the challenges of the environment required sophisticated agricultural technology. Unlike the Middle East, the Andes lacked domesticated and large-seeded plants such as wheat and barley and large and domesticated animals such as horses and cattle. Agriculture on the desert coast required the development of irrigation. In the mountains, the climate and steep terrain required a range of technological solutions such as terraces, exploitation of microclimates, selective breeding. Due to the climatic uncertainties, farmers traditionally farmed several crops at several elevations and exposures. At a macro level and states did the same with the vertical archipelago, establishing colonies at different elevations and locations to increase the possibilities of agricultural success.
The Norte Chico civilization was a complex pre-Columbian society that included as many as 30 major population centers in what is now the Norte Chico region of north-central coastal Peru. It is the oldest known civilization in