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Finnish Dig Near Titicaca Sheds Light on Prehistoric People

Painted ceramics recently found in an archeological dig on the Bolivian side of Lake Titicaca have revealed new details about a prehistoric people that pre-dated the Incas.

Helsinki University officials say the very realistic portraits on the ceramic artifacts found by archaeologists on Bolivia's Pariti Island tell a lot about the costumes and jewelry of the Tiwanaku people. About 300 kilograms of those artifacts, apparently used in rituals and up to 1,100 years old, have been found on the island site.

Until now, the Tiwanakus have been a mystery to modern historians because they left no writings and their culture died out 800 years ago. It is known that they first settled in the Bolivian Andean mountains near the lake around 2,400 years ago.

Some information for this story provided by AFP.