Category: World / November 26, 2012 7:50 PM EST
Archaeologists working at Peru's Machu Picchu have unearthed four bodies at the famed site, including remains thought to date back to an ancient tribe that ruled over the region before the mighty Incas.
At the ancient Salapunku settlement in the protected area of Machu Picchu, archaeologist showed off the bones to media on Wednesday (November 21).
The four bodies, three dating back to the Inca period of 1300 to 1500 A.C.E. and the fourth believed to belong to the pre-Incan Killke culture of 700 A.C.E., were found in ancient caves believed to be used for funerary rites.
The fourth set of bones was found in another area of Machu Picchu, leading experts to believe the remains are from a pre-Incan Killke tribe.
With the well-preserved remains featuring intact skulls, experts will continue investigations on the remains to determine their exact age and hopefully reveal further insights into Peru's mysterious pre-Hispanic age.
Machu Picchu, which was built more than 500 years ago, is a anthropological treasure chest for archaeologists with work at the iconic site revealing new clues into the ancient Inca and their predecessors.
Until the arrival of the Spanish in the 1500s, the Incas ruled an empire for several centuries that stretched from Colombia and Ecuador in the north to what are now Peru and Chile in the South.