When we talk about the Lord of Sipan, we’re talking about one of the most emblematic figures of the Mochica culture. The Lord of Sipan was an ancient Mochica ruler from the 3rd century, whose discovery proved far-reaching for world archeology as his tomb was the first royal burial site found intact in South America, and belonging to a Peruvian civilization prior to the Inca Empire.
The royal tomb of the Lord of Sipan was discovered by Dr. Walter Alva and his team of researchers in 1987, in Huaca Rajada, an archeological complex southeast of the city of Chiclayo. According to studies, the Mochica ruler was 1.65 meters tall, approximately 30 years old and probably died between 240 and 310 AD. He was found in a wooden coffin, the first of its kind found in America. Next to his head and feet were two skeletons of young women and the skeletons of a dog and two llamas on either side. Covered from head to toe in gold, silver, copper and precious stones, his skull was on a gold plate, showing how important this ancient leader was to the Mochica culture.
Around 600 objects of great historical and monetary value were recovered in the tomb of the Lord of Sipan. Ceramic and carved wooden objects were also found In the sarcophagus, in addition to pieces of gold, silver and precious stones. As for the clothing, three pairs of gold and turquoise earmuffs were found, and a necklace made up of twenty representations of peanut fruits, ten made of gold and ten made of silver. The peanut represented the beginning or rebirth for the Mochica culture.