Qillqatani (Aymara qillqaña to write, -ta a suffix to indicate the participle, -ni a suffix to indicate ownership, "the one with something written", Hispanicized Qelqatani, Quelcatani) is an archaeological site in Peru.[3] It is located above the Rio Chila, in the Puno Region, El Collao Province, Santa Rosa District, at a height of about 5 m (16 ft) above the riverbed.[2] Qillqatani is surrounded by dry puna.[2]

location in Peru
Alternative nameQelqatani
LocationPeru, Puno Region
RegionLake Titicaca basin
Coordinates16°56′58″S 69°53′22″W[1]
Altitude4,420 m (14,501 ft)[2]
Area200 m2 (2,153 sq ft)[2]
Foundedc. 7500 BP
Abandoned1472 AD[2]
Site notes
ArchaeologistsMark Aldenderfer

The site was declared a National Cultural Heritage (Patrimonio Cultural) of Peru.[4] Qillqatani is known for its elaborate rock art panels.


Qillqatani is the first archaeological site in the Lake Titicaca basin to be systematically excavated. Archaeologists have identified 36 cultural strata at the site. From 7500 to 4000 BP, Qillqatani was inhabited by hunter-gatherers as a seasonal campsite. These early occupants hunted mostly camelids, and some deer.[2] From 3660 BP onwards, Qillqatani was inhabited by pastoralist camelid-herders who built houses and began to occupy the site long-term.[2] These later occupants also began to trade with people from lower attitudes to obtain Chenopodium.[2]


  1. "Exotic Goods, Chivay Obsidian, and Sociopolitical Change in the South-Central Andes (eScholarship)". Escholarship.org. Retrieved March 11, 2017.
  2. Peregrine 2001.
  3. mapaspects.org "Qillqatani rock shelter"
  4. mincetur.gob.pe Archived February 4, 2014, at the Wayback Machine "Arte rupestre de Qelqatani", retrieved on January 25, 2014

See also


  • Peregrine, Peter N.; et al., eds. (2001). Encyclopedia of Prehistory Volume 7: South America.
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