Mass Grave of at Least 140 Children Discovered, Apparent Victims of Ritualistic Child Sacrifice

Archaeologists have unearthed the remains of more than 140 children on the northern coast of Peru in what appears to have been the largest instance of mass child sacrifice in the Americas — if not the entire world, according to an exclusive report from National Geographic.

The macabre discovery was made on a low bluff just a thousand feet from the Pacific Ocean, amid cinder-block residential compounds in La Libertad outside Trujillo, Peru’s third-largest city. It’s estimated that the children — and 200 young llamas — were sacrificed about 550 years ago, when the area was home to the pre-Columbian Chimú civilization. The Chimú was the second-largest empire in Peru before Spanish colonization, next to the Incas, who were also known to sacrifice children during rituals.

Until now, the largest incident of mass child sacrifice was believed to have occurred in the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan — modern-day Mexico City — where 42 children’s bodies had been discovered.

Ongoing scientific investigations into the Peru site, formally called Huanchaquito-Las Llamas, are being carried out by an international team funded by the National Geographic Society. The team is led by Gabriel Prieto of the National University of Trujillo and John Verano of Tulane University. (Read more from “Mass Grave of at Least 140 Children Discovered, Apparent Victims of Ritualistic Child Sacrifice” HERE)

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