In this project Ulla Jaekel investigates intentional entombment and the subsequently superstructure of ritual complexes as a cultural universal phenomenon und furthermore the theses on the motivation, whereby she focuses on the beginning and development of this practice.


A fundamental distinction is made between naturally formed layers and deliberately deposited material. In contrast to geological erosion or debris layers, the fill consisting of very uniform and presumably carefully laid out material, is assumed to be the result of intentional human action. The phenomenon, also known as e.g. “Temple Entombment”, will be discussed based on ritual sites of the Central Andes as well as case studies from other cultural areas of prehistoric times. While on all those selected sites conscious entombment processes and the active preservation of architectural structures seem to be a common feature, there will be a focus on the similarities and differences in the ‘intentional’ process of entombment of ritual structures. Specifically, the question of tracing intentionality in the archaeological record will be addressed. 

This Ph.D. thesis is being written within the program Landscape Archaeology and Architecture (LAA) of the Berlin Graduate School of Ancient Studies (BerGSAS).