The Nazca Lines in Peru

The Nazca lines in Peru are a topic of speculation and controversy. Why? Because no one really knows why and who created them. There are many different theories as to why the lines were created in the desert. The Nazca lines in Peru are also called geoglyphs and there are over 300 of them. What are they? They are designs, or motifs that can primarily be seen from above rather than on the earth. The designs include things like spiders, and monkeys and lizards, as well a a myriad of other things.

The speculation as to “why” the Nazca Lines in Peru were created include things such as ley lines for water, and another is that they were created by aliens, and then another is that they were created for ceremony of the Nazca people in the years around 400 to 600.  The designs were created by removing the red pebbles on the desert floor, revealing the greyish color underneath, thereby creating a mark on the desert floor

One of my favorite theories of the Nazca lines in Peru was given by a man named Henri  Stierlin, a Swiss art historian and scholar. His theory is that the lines represented a giant loom in which the measurement of the length of the lines corresponded with the “length” of the Paracus mummy shrouds. The Paracus people occupied this area, and their textiles that wrapped the dead were very long pieces of cloth. Sterlin investigated the relationship of the length of the burial shrouds to the Nazca lines in the desert . Below is a picture of the Nazca lines from one perspective.

Nazca lines photo by Nasa

Nazca lines-NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan Aster Science Team


The Nazca lines in the image above do indeed look like a form of a suspended measurement and if you have ever warped a loom you know that the first part of the process is winding the warp. I think Stierlen might have been on the right tract. As for an explanation of the figures and motifs, he assigned ritual to those images. What holds true is that the Nazca lines are still an enigma which is largely unsolved.

Monkey- Nazca lines in the desert

Monkey- Nazca lines in the desert

You can read more about the Nazca lines in the desert of Peru here, at National Geographic’s web site.




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