For centuries, the irregularly shaped stones of Peru’s Inca stone walls have captivated archaeologists and visitors alike. Their seamless interlocking, so tight that not even a razor blade can fit between them, has left researchers puzzled about the construction methods used by a culture without iron tools. However, a new explanation challenges long-held beliefs and sheds light on the mystery.
Recent hypotheses suggest that the Inca used a reddish glittery mud composed primarily of quartz and feldspar to achieve their perfect stonemasonry. This mud allowed the builders to create jointed stones of different shapes and sizes with precision. The high quartz and feldspar content found in the stone structures of Peru lends support to this theory.
With this new understanding, the fascinating story of ancient engineering and innovation behind the Inca stone walls may finally be unraveled.
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Top image: Inca stone wall. Source: Murray Foubister / CC BY-SA 2.0.