Kenko Temple (Qenko)
Peru, Cusco

Built in the form of an amphitheater carved into the rock, the Kenko Temple is an archaeological site of the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The temple is located northeast of Cuzco, on the hill of Socoro and covers an area of about 3.5 square kilometers. Kenko is a complex of four temples located on the side of a low mountain. Scientists are still arguing about the true purpose of the temple, there are many conflicting assumptions. There is a stone in front of the temple, on top of which a ray of sun falls on June 21, which gave rise to the hypothesis that Kenko is an observatory. Outside the temple there is a flat platform with a stone throne in the middle. Many frog bones were found on this site, which reinforced the version about the medical purpose of the temple. Allegedly, some extract or poison obtained from frogs was used as anesthesia. The construction of the temple dates back to 1500. On the walls of the temple are carved images of sacred animals of the Indians: cougars, condors and snakes. According to the beliefs of the ancient Incas, they symbolize three levels of the universe. Inside the temple there are very narrow passages that even a teenager cannot squeeze into, stairs cut into the walls, abutting against a stone ceiling, "surgical tables" - smooth polished stone slabs - in caves without access to natural light. Archaeological finds in these places allowed scientists to suggest that in antiquity Kenko was not only a religious, but also a scientific center. Skulls with traces of skillfully performed trepanation were found in Kenko, and the analysis showed that half of the patients after the operations were completely cured. Centuries before the arrival of modern medicine in Peru, neurosurgery was born here. Therefore, the version of the medical center in Kenko looks quite convincing.

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