Dating Caral, a preceramic site in the Supe Valley on the central coast of Peru

Science. 2001 Apr 27;292(5517):723-6. doi: 10.1126/science.1059519.


Radiocarbon dates from the site of Caral in the Supe Valley of Peru indicate that monumental corporate architecture, urban settlement, and irrigation agriculture began in the Americas by 4090 years before the present (2627 calibrated years B.C.) to 3640 years before the present (1977 calibrated years B.C.). Caral is located 23 kilometers inland from the Pacific coast and contains a central zone of monumental, residential, and nonresidential architecture covering an area of 65 hectares. Caral is one of 18 large preceramic sites in the Supe Valley.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture*
  • Animals
  • Archaeology*
  • Architecture
  • Carbon Isotopes
  • Crops, Agricultural
  • Humans
  • Peru
  • Plants
  • Urbanization


  • Carbon Isotopes