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Mystic Places

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Inca Civilization: 
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Mystic Places


BOOKS and Video


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Searching for Lost Worlds: Machu Picchu: Secrets of the Incan Empire (1999)

Run Time: 52 minutes

MACHU PICCHU: Secrets of the Incan Empire. Seeking fame and fortune, Hiram Bingham treks into the mountainous central regions of Peru in search of the Lost City of the Incas. When he emerges, he is an exploration superstar; the recipient of such adulation, he is able to parlay it into a career in the U.S. Senate. Following a trail of rumor and legend, he wanders far into the sacred valleys, where he discovers a series of mountain-top sanctuaries used by the Incas to hide from the Spanish Conquerors. Machu Picchu chronicles the arduous, near-mystical journey of a man consumed by ambition and reveals the astonishing remains of a vanished culture, hidden beneath the encroaching jungle and beyond the mists of time.

Nova: Secrets of Lost Empires - Inca (1997)  

Run Time: 60 minutes

Uncover the secrets of ancient civilizations as NOVA journeys to an archaeological site where teams of experts use traditional techniques to test their hypotheses. Explore the magnificent mountainside citadels, and marvel as villagers create a 150-foot suspension bridge using nothing but grass.

How'd they do it? The Inca people built huge structures in the Andes using only Stone Age technology, structures which remain standing today, mortarless. Nova, in Secrets of Lost Empires: Inca, part of the Secrets of Lost Empire series, sent a team of experts to Peru to test hypotheses by building smaller structures using only Incan engineering, as well as by watching modern natives build enormous suspension bridges out of nothing but grass. It's hard work, but perseverance is the key. Completely engrossing, Secrets of Lost Empires: Inca shows us that high-tech isn't the answer to everything as ageless, monumental structures are shown to be built with nothing but muscles, rope, and ingenuity.

Tombs of Sipan  
(VHS from A&E Television Networks)


It is the richest burial site ever discovered in the Western Hemisphere a massive royal tomb on the outskirts of Sipan, Peru, where the ancient treasures of the Moche civilization rested undisturbed for centuries.
But in 1987, a sudden flood of priceless gold and silver artifacts was the first clue that a major new find had been made not by archaeologists, but by grave robbers who were selling the spoils of an ancient, little-known people. TOMBS OF SIPAN tells the incredible tale of archaeologists and art-dealers, investigators and looters that led to one of the most important archaeological finds in history. The case was broken when one looter, upset with his take, confessed and turned in the others. The thieves and many stunning artifacts were captured, but most importantly, they revealed the location of their trove.
From the saga of their discovery to the ongoing investigations, this is the remarkable saga of the TOMBS OF SIPAN.

This product is unavailable for shipment outside the U.S. and Canada.

Inca Gold
(VHS from A&E Television Networks)

Run Time: 50 minutes


When the Spanish invaded the Incan Empire, they captured King Atahualpa and held him ransom. The captured ruler ordered his armies to collect vast amounts of gold and give it to the Spanish to win his freedom. But after receiving riches beyond anything they could imagine, his captors killed Atahualpa.
Legend has it that one general had not yet made it to the capitol when he heard of the death of his liege. He is said to have been transporting 750,000 pounds of gold, which he hid in the rugged Llanganati mountains of modern Ecuador. The search has been on ever since. INCA GOLD follows the efforts of archeologist John Rick and electronics whiz Roger Vickers as they pool their talents in an effort to uncover the long-lost treasure. Ride along as they fly over the difficult terrain to create a virtual reality map of the area which may help reveal where the gold is buried.
Can science provide the answer to an ancient mystery?

This product is unavailable for shipment outside the U.S. and Canada.

  The Inca Trail
  by Richard Danbury



The book gives a detailed description not only of Machu Picchu and Cusco, but a host of other ruins in the area. The maps provided are detailed and allow a self-tour of each site. Recommendations for side tours are terrific, plus he provides alternate trails to Machu Picchu for "the road less traveled". There is a brief chapter on Lima, as well as shopping and travel tips for the region.

Warriors of the Clouds : A Lost Civilization in the Upper Amazon of Peru
by Keith Muscutt

About the Author
Keith Muscutt is assistant dean of the arts at the University of California, Santa Cruz. 

Book Description
Discovered in a remote and rugged area of the Amazonian Andes in 1843, seventy years before Machu Picchu was brought to public attention, the colossal ruin known as Kulap was built by members of a regional culture or group of cultures known as the Chachapoya. Now author-photographer Keith Muscutt examines in fascinating detail the history of the Chachapoya. In addition to their cultural origins in the Amazon Basin, their distinctive architecture, and their defiant resistance to conquest by the Incas and the Spanish, he explores modern Chachapoya communities and shares stories of some of his own expeditions, traveling by mule and on foot, into Chachapoya territory.

Art of the Andes : From Chavin to Inca 
by Rebecca Stone-Miller

This is an excellent overview of native Andean artform the earliest perod through Chavin, Paracas, Nasca, Moche, Tiwanaku, Wari, to Incan. Covers architecture, textiles ,pottery and metallic arts. Looks at the main themes of religious and secular art in these various mediums. Text is accompanied by many black and white photographs, drawings and plans. Some photographs are in colour.

MacHu Picchu
by Barry Brukoff (Photographer), Pablo Neruda, Isabel Allende, Stephen Kessler (Translator)

About the Author
Barry Brukoff is a photographer and designer whose books include The Enigma of Stonehenge with John Fowles, Morocco with Paul Bowles, and Greece: Land of Light with Nicholas Gage.

Book Description
Machu Picchu, one of those talismanic places that everyone dreams of visiting, is celebrated here in the visually stunning photography of Barry Brukoff that evokes the mystery and spiritual atmosphere of this sacred lost city. Interwoven with the images is Pablo Neruda's epic poem "Heights of Machu Picchu" that has been described as "one of Neruda's greatest poetic works." The book is a bilingual edition: a sparkling new English translation of Neruda's poem by noted translator Stephen Kessler runs side by side with the original Spanish.

The Ancient Kingdoms of Peru
by Nigel Davies

Archaeologist and Incan expert Nigel Davies offers astonishing revelations about the remarkable empire of the Incas and the civilizations that preceded them. From the desert at Nazca to the great coastal civilization of Chimor, this compelling overview makes accessible the latest research on all the ancient kingdoms of Peru. 6 maps. 31 figures.

The MacHu Picchu Guidebook: A Self-Guided Tour
by Ruth M. Wright, Alfredo Valencia Zegarra, Alfredo Valencia Zegarra

Whether you have three hours or three days at Machu Picchu, this guidebook will help you see things of significance that otherwise might just blend in with the overall grand impressions of this magical place. Built in the mid-fifteenth centruy by Incan royalty and "rediscovered" by Hiram Bingham in 1911, Machu Picchu is the stuff of legends. The authors offer an almost step-by-step tour, constantly guiding the traveler to understand key elements of the function and construction of these remarkably well-designed, well-built, and well-preserved ruins. A full-color foldout map along with some 150 illustrations, many of them in full color as well, will make this the indispensable guide. No traveler should go to Machu Picchu without this superb little book.

The Secret of the Incas - Myth, Astronomy, and the War Against Time
Book Description

Step by step, Sullivan pieces together the hidden esoteric tradition of the Andes to uncover the tragic secret of the Incas, a tribe who believed that, if events in the heavens could influence those on earth, perhaps the reverse could be true. Anyone who reads this book will never look at the ruins of the Incas, or at the night sky, the same way again. Illustrations. (Note: This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.)

Book Review

A sometimes murky, frequently meandering excursion into the meaning of ancient Andean beliefs, arguing that in a series of sophisticated myths Incan soothsayers foretold their own civilization's doom at the hands of Pizarro and his conquistadors in 1532. Sullivan, a scholar of Native American cultures, begins with a question that has perplexed historians of the Spanish conquest: How could the vast Inca Empire, with its millions of subjects, have been conquered overnight by a band of 170 Spanish adventurers? Sullivan digs into the history and mythology of Andean civilization to find what he feels is the answer: For hundreds of years the sages of the Andes had believed that astronomical transitions presaged earthly cataclysms; reading changes in the night skies in the 1400s, Incan priest-astronomers foretold the imminent destruction of their own recently founded empire. Sullivan argues, in a sometimes hyperbolic first-person account (``In that moment I had, I believed, touched for an instant the terrible burden and tragic urgency of the Inca vision''), that the Incas followed the planets, recorded precessional events in their myths, and equated social and celestial changes. He further asserts that elements in Incan culture preceding Pizarro's arrival--constant warfare and the Incan ritual of human sacrifice--represented an attempt to halt the march of time and prevent the apocalyptic events foreshadowed by changes in the night sky. The Incas assumed that the arrival of Pizarro represented the culmination of the prophecy and the failure of their own efforts to prevent its occurrence. The thread of the author's argument can be hard to follow. Still, Sullivan's deep feeling for Andean folk materials, and the originality of his observations about Andean astronomy, make his text worthwhile for those interested in the history of South American civilization and for those who, in the wake of Joseph Campbell's works, seek enduring meaning in ancient mythology. (History Book Club and One Spirit Book Club alternate selections) -- Copyright 1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Author's Comment

"At the very core of Andean social, intellectual, political, and religious sensibility, we find the influence of a complex astronomical cosmology...Andean myth records transformations that occurred in the social and celestial spheres simultaneously, and whose synchronous occurrence can be verified by recourse to the archaeological record on one hand, and planetarium and archaeoastronomical computer data on the other. This system of thought, already ancient when the Incas appeared on the stage of history in the early 1400s, became, in the hands of the Incas, a separate reality in its own right, the foremost justification and defining force in the unfolding of the Inca Empire."

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