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Dig History and Archaeology Magazine for Kids and Children

Dig History and Archaeology Magazine for Kids and Children January 2019

Budding archaeologists are off to new adventures at archaeological sites around the world, where they look over the shoulders of professional archaeologists working in the field to unearth important finds. DIG also brings readers right into working laboratories and museums to learn about cutting-edge conservation techniques. Interviews with onsite archaeologists give children a well-rounded view what archaeology is really all about. Grades 5-9

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United States
Cricket Media, Inc.

in this issue

2 min.
always learning!

South America — I had touched on the continent in the past, but not for a while. So, I had the topic high on my priority list for 2019. To the computer, I went; then to the library; and then, to my own library collection. I can't remember now exactly when I first saw the unfamiliar word, but there it was — Moche. Was it the name of a people, a civilization, a period of time? Actually, it is used for all three, and, interchangeably, it seemed to me, with Mochica. I was intrigued. I had to learn more, even if I never included it in DIG! Then another word popped up that really got me interested — drones. Drones were being used to learn more about “Moche”! Drones and…

1 min.
about the cover

Check out the headdresses, earspools, and backflaps that these two Moche people are wearing! The design of these and all the other artifacts in this 21st-century illustration are based on finds from Moche excavation sites. Cover illustration by Christiane Clados (see also page 26). NOTE: In this issue on the Moche, we are using the abbreviations B.C.E. (Before the Common Era) and C.E. (Common Era) and not B.C. and a.d. B.C.E. and C.E. are used presently worldwide and have no religious affiliation.…

3 min.
meet the moche

The Moche belonged to one of many advanced societies that developed in South America before the arrival of the Europeans. Also known as the Mochicas, they lived in the deserts, valleys, and coastal areas of northern Peru between the years 200 and 850 C.E. Their most significant accomplishment was the transformation of the deserts that are common in this region, into vast agricultural valleys. In doing so, they created the conditions for an advanced civilization — one that excelled in technology, science, agriculture, irrigation, social and political organization, monumental architecture, and all the arts. IN THE BEGINNING The Moche themselves had emerged from preexisting societies in the vast deserts of northern Peru. In the beginning, it is likely that the ocean was the source of most of their food. The waters in…

6 min.
stories in clay

We do not know what the Moche called themselves. They did not write, so we learn about them mostly through archaeology and art history. Yet, even though they left no writing, they did leave a rich record of their world in their art. We see their designs painted on temple walls, metal objects, and especially the distinctive ceramic vessels that have been a hallmark of the “Moche” for more than 100 years. What the ‘Fine Wares’ Say While some ancient cultures did not use pottery, ceramics played an important role for others in a wide variety of activities. Many ancients relied on large pottery jars for storing food, especially grains and liquids. In addition, cooking pots and pans allowed them to prepare food in different ways. Special “serving wares” were made so…

4 min.
peru the north coast of peru

The Peruvian coast is a narrow strip that measures approximately 1,550 miles in length and between 12 to 62 miles in width. It is located between the Andean Mountains on the east and the Pacific Ocean on the west. The area is one of the driest in the world, comparable only to the Sahara Desert in northern Africa and the Atacama Desert in Chile. It is the mountains, however, that determine most of the geological and climatic characteristics of both the coast and the entire country. Temperate, Not Tropical Despite the location of Peru near the Equator, the coastal climate is not tropical. Rather, it is mostly temperate. The high mountains of the Andean Cordillera act as a natural barrier, stopping any precipitation and moisture coming from the east. The cool ocean waters…

4 min.
a closer look

To understand how the Moche made and decorated their ceramics, we must take a closer look at their economy. But, first, what is economy? By definition, it is a science that studies the way in which goods (objects) and services (such as internet, water, light) are produced and distributed within a society. Included in this study are the production technologies of the goods and services within both present and past societies. A ‘Closed Economy’ We know the Moche were great potters. So, to better understand them, we need to study the production technologies they used to make the ceramics. We also need to remember that their economic system was different from those of today. The Moche had no services, only goods. They also had no currency and, of course, no internet. This…