Recent archaeological discoveries in the Caral-Supé valley have pushed back the timeline of cultural development in the Andes by several millennia. A fixture of later Incan culture, the quipú (or khipu) was an elaborate series of knotted ropes that seemed to serve as a coded system of communication. Excavations have demonstrated that the quipú was used in the region as much as 3,000 years before its earliest previous attestation. Moreover, this quipú was apparently left as an offering on the stairway of a public building when another building was built on top.
© President and Fellows of Harvard College, Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University, PM# 2004.24.35177 (digital file# 153390016).