The recent archaeological discovery in the Upano area in eastern Ecuador’s Amazon rainforest has revealed a huge ancient city. This lost city in the Amazon rainforest spans across a 300-square-kilometer area. This discovery has reshaped our understanding of the Amazonian civilizations. The application of advanced LiDAR technology led to this revelation. LiDAR shows over 6000 structures, including houses, plazas, roads, and canals that are hidden beneath the dense vegetation.
This groundbreaking discovery challenges traditional views of the Amazonian societies. It showcases an advanced urban landscape that was previously unknown. This discovery has shed light on a 2, 500-year-old lost civilization of farmers. Now, let’s have a closer look at and explore the historical significance.
“This is older than any other site we know in the Amazon. We have a Eurocentric view of civilisation, but this shows we have to change our idea about what is culture and civilisation.”Prof Stephen Rostain, director of investigation at the National Centre for Scientific Research in France
Exploring the Lost City In The Amazon: A Glimpse into the Past
This ancient city is estimated to be 1500 to 2500 years old. It boasts architectural marvels that provide insights into the lifestyle and culture of its inhabitants. The interconnected houses and complex canal systems reveal a highly organized society in the heart of the Amazon rainforest. According to sources, people have lived in this ancient city for over 1000 years. Approximately, 10,000s if not 100,000s have occupied the land at the time of its civilization.
LiDAR has detected over 6000 rectangular platforms with agricultural fields and drainage systems in the surrounding. These platforms are at least 20m (66 ft) by 10m (33 ft) and 2-3m high. Arranged in groups of three to six units, scientists believe most of them were homes. However, other platforms were believed to have been built for ceremonial purposes. The age and significance of this discovery present a remarkable link to an era roughly contemporary with the Roman Empire.
The complex, urban population in this ancient city seems to have had a sophisticated road network. It spans across a vast distance along with right angles. Many of the rectangular platforms connect to straight roads and paths. Some go for over 25km. One such complex construction would have required leaders, planning, engineers, and more. Scientists also uncovered causeways with ditches on the sides. As per sources, these were canals that have helped in managing the abundant water in the region.
“This shows a very dense occupation and an extremely complicated society.”Michael Heckenberger, University of Florida archaeologist
The Amazon’s Pre-Columbian Societies
This discovery contrasts the stereotypical view of primitive Amazonian tribes with the reality of complex societies. Professor Stephen Rostain‘s pivotal role in leading the research has reshaped our understanding of the Amazonian civilizations.
Amazon has a significant history when it comes to human settlement. It is considered the home of many large sedentary populations. Apart from the Inca empires and their followers, it became the home to Huari civilizations. Millions of people from Huari once lived in the forests. They have apparently shaped the environment to suit their requirements.
The discovery of the 2, 500-year-old lost city in the Amazon rainforest has not only unraveled a hidden ancient civilization but also showcased the complex urban societies that once thrived in this region. This discovery challenges preconceived notions. It also sets the stage for further research into the rich history of the Amazon. Let’s continue to follow the unfolding story of this remarkable ancient city and support efforts to conserve the invaluable heritage of the Amazon rainforest.