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Temple of Doom



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Ancient Ornament
Photograph by Ira Block

A mystery in mother of pearl, this ornate disk may have served as a sacred amulet or merely as a decorative bauble. Whatever its purpose, archaeologist Régulo Franco is most intrigued by its outer ring of bird heads, a few of which still have eyes made from tiny chips of spondylus shell. "These might be seabirds," he says, "and the circular pattern could relate to waves on the ocean." Franco believes the artisan who made it lived between A.D. 800 to 900, part of a transitional culture that came after the demise of the Moche. Such finds, he says, indicate that later peoples revered the site and may have regarded the pyramids at El Brujo as sacred.

Photo Fast Facts

Camera: Canon EOS 1V
Film Type: Fujichrome Tungsten 64
Lens: 100mm macro
Speed and F-Stop: 4 seconds @ f/11
Weather Conditions: Indoors
Time of Day: Unrecorded
Lighting Techniques: I used multiple tungsten lights.


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