Inca Gold: Illapa

As a mostly agriculture-based society, the Inca worshipped what was important to them. They worshipped Inti the Sun-God who provided sunlight and enlightenment. Mama Quilla the Moon-god who provided the seasons, protection from the dark, and was a protector of women. The third God would be the essential piece missing for an agricultural society to thrive and that God’s name was Illapa, Master of Clouds Rain and Hail.

The Inca believed that when it rained it was because a jug of water had been spilled from a broken water jug high in the sky. This water jug contained water from the Milk Way Galaxy.

Works cited:

https://religionoftheinca.weebly.com/inca-gods.html

Inca Gold: Viracocha

Viracocha was considered to be the father of all other Inca gods. He created the earth, heavens, sun, moon, and all things living. After Viracocha finished his work he traveled the world teaching humanity and introducing civilized arts. It was believed that after Viracocha was finished creating the world that he traveled far and wide teaching and influencing his creations. His next step would be to move west across the Pacific. Never to be seen again but promising to return. In his absence, lesser gods were assigned to the duty of managing the human race.

Inca lore surrounding Viracocha states that humans were his second attempt at creating life. He originally created a race of giants , made of stone , in the age of darkness. The ogre race was found to be unruly and Viracocha found it suitable to punish them with a great flood. The giants that survived were eventually returned to their natural stone form. Some of these stone giants can still be seen today at sites such as Tiahuanaco and Pukara.

For his second attempt Viracocha tried using clay. He also gifted them clothes, language , agriculutre, and arts. It was during this time he created the Sun , moon , and stars. It’s believed that all of these creations were created from the islands in Lake Titicaca. Viracocha was satisfied and felt he could he continue this path around the world. It is believed he ended in Manta (near Ecuador), then Viracocha walked across the waters of the Pacific heading west. He promised to return one day to the Inca.

Works cited:

https://www.ancient.eu/Viracocha/

Inca Gold: Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo

Inti was concerned for the Tiawanako people. Living along the shores of Lake Titicaca, the Tiawanako people were mostly fishermen. Inti felt his people deserved more.

The son and daughter of Inti and Mama Quilla; Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo were created to civilize the Inca people and guide them to enlightenment. Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo were told by their parents to search for fertile land upon which their empire would be built. Inti gifted Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo a golden stick. Inti instructed them that the stick would sink if the wielder was standing in the promised land. The promised land they found was a region near Lake Titicaca.

The shores of Lake Titicaca were inhabited by the Tiawanako people. Because of the gold stick, the fancy clothes, and jewelry Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo wore they were perceived as Gods by the Tiawanako people. Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo taught the men how to create a society and worship the Sun God. Mama Ocllo taught the women domestic tasks such as textile and provisioning.

Works cited:

https://www.machupicchu.org/the_legend_of_manco_capac_and_mama_ocllo.htm

Inca Gold: Mama Quilla

Mama Quilla or Mother Moon governed the festival calendar of the Inca. She represented the seasonal cycles, health, prosperity, divination, and time. Mama Quilla was insightful to the Inca. She could warn of impending danger through the means of eclipses and provide guidance through divination. She was the sister and wife of Inti, daughter of Viracocha and mother of Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo ( the founders of the Inca empire and culture). She was widely viewed as a defender of women and was the Goddess of marriage and the menstrual cycle.

Divination was common in Inca society. While the Sun is shining, sit beneath the shade of a tree and watch closely as the Sun’s light shines through the branches and leaves. While observing the shadows cast and the patterns it would make one should keep a question in their mind. Mama Quilla’s response would be written in the patterns and changes of light in the shadows. Another common divination ritual was for unfavorable weather. In the event of unfavorable weather, place any yellow-colored herbs on a fire source and watch what unfolds. Popping or flying indicates lots of energy and positive response. Smouldering indicated anger and an iffy response. Finally, if the flames died out completely then this was understood as a definite negative and one should not proceed.

Lore suggests that Mama Quilla cried tears of pure silver and that Lunar eclipses were caused when Mama Quilla was under attack by an animal ( usually a supernatural jaguar, mountain lion, or serpent ). The Incas feared lunar eclipses as they believed that during the eclipse if Mama Quilla was not protected by the Inca and the attack was successful then the entire world would be left in total darkness. The method of defending Mama Quilla was to make as much noise as possible. This would frighten the attacker and ultimately save the entire world. This tradition continued even after the Inca were converted to Catholicism by the Conquistadors. Unfortunately for the Inca, the Spanish could predict when eclipses would take place; thus using it to their advantage against the Inca.

To be continued..

Works cited:

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Mama-Quilla

Inca Gold: Inti

Inti God of The Sun and Patron of Empire and Conquest was all-powerful. Inti was married to the goddess of the moon Quilla ( or Mama Quilla ). The original leader and founder of the Inca civilization, Manco Capac and his wife Mama Ocllo were believed to be guided by Inti or may have even been the son and daughter of Inti and Mama Quilla. This connection to humans allowed Inca rulers to claim divinity and act as translators between the Gods and the Inca people.

It wasn’t until the Wiraqocha Inca (1425 CE) or the 9th Inca ruler Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui (1438-1471 CE) that the cult of Inti really became established and helped promote Inti to an all-powerful ruler. Inti was not the divine ruler though. This burden weighed on Viracocha. Viracocha was higher in status than all the other Gods and lived on a private island in Lake Titicaca. Viracocha usually remained in the background regarding worldly affairs and allowed the other gods to govern the Incas. With the expansion of the Inca empire and a fixation on Inti and sun worship; It was not long until every city in the Inca empire contained a shrine to Inti. Sun worship was quickly integrated into the religions of the conquered peoples and used as imperial propaganda that the Inca were the people with a divine right to rule.

The greatest of these temples dedicated to Inti was the Coricancha Temple or “House of The Sun”. The temple was located in the sacred district of the capital of Cusco. It was at the Coricancha that the most senior High Priest of The Sun (Villac Umu) presided over rites in honour of Inti. The High Priest of the Sun was exclusively assisted by young virgin priestesses. Both female and male priests were allowed to carry out sun ceremonies but only virgin priestesses were allowed to assist The High Priest of The Sun.

Inti was usually represented through art. A gold statue, a sun disk, or a golden mask. Gold ( or the sweat of the sun as sun worshipers believed ) was his gift and he should be honored through it. The Temple of The Sun interior was exactly that. It’s walls lined with a thick gold plate ( 700 half-meter panels of beaten gold whilst outside the temple was a life-size scene of a field of corn with llamas and shepherds all made from gold and silver. Inside the shrine held the most sacred statue of Inti. The statue was of Inti but as a small seated boy, called Punchao (Day or Midday Sun). From head to shoulders sun rays protruded from him. His head wrapped in a royal headband and also had snakes and lions coming out of his body. The stomach of the statue was hollow and used to contain the vital organs of previous Inca rulers. Every day this statue would be moved outside and into the golden field so that Inti could absorb the sun’s rays.

To be continued..

Works Cited:

https://www.ancient.eu/Inti/

https://www.ancient.eu/Inca_Civilization/

Inca Gold: A Brief History

It’s important to understand that the Andreans (Aboriginal inhabitants of the area of the Central Andes in South America) didn’t have a written language, they hadn’t developed the wheel, money, buying and selling, or even the concept of an economy. Imagine a world with no economy and a strong religious presence but with an excess of gold.

The Inca civilization arose from the Peruvian highlands sometime in the early 13th century. The Inca created one of the largest and cohesive empires the world has ever known in under a century. Every aspect of Inca culture was encompassed by religion. The administrative, political and military center of the empire was located in the city of Cusco. Success or failure in any form was considered to be directly influenced by their gods. For the Inca, Gold was a gift from the Inti and it should be used to honor him along with the other Inca gods. If Inti was not honored there could be severe consequences.

Inti was the God of The Sun and The Patron of Empire and Conquest. Inti was revered and held in prestige by his devoted. He gave and he took away as he saw fit. Every city had temples devoted to Inti. The most significant temple of the Inca empire was Coricancha in Cusco city. Coricancha means “house of gold” in Quechua ( Inca official language). Its walls were covered in thick gold layers. Innumerable amounts of gold coins, jewelry, and religious artifacts dedicated to Inti were inside. Where’s all the gold now? What happened to it? What happened to the people who supposedly recovered it? We’ll explore these topics in more in the following weeks!

To be continued..

Sources Cited:

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/archaeology-and-history/archaeology/lost-inca-gold/

https://nga.gov.au/exhibition/incas/default.cfm?IRN=227632&BioArtistIRN=91406&MnuID=SRCH&ViewID=2

ATOLE

Atole or Spanish About this sounda’tole , from Nahuatl ātōlli [aːˈtoːlːi]), also known as atol and atol de elote, is a traditional hot corn- and masa-based beverage of Mesoamerican origin. Chocolate atole is known as champurrado or atole. It is typically accompanied with tamales, and very popular during the Christmas holiday season (las Posadas)

In Mexico[edit]

In Mexico, the drink typically includes masa (corn hominy flour), water, piloncillo (unrefined cane sugar), cinnamon, vanilla, and optional chocolate or fruit. The mixture is blended and heated before serving. Atole is made by toasting masa on a comal (griddle), then adding water that was boiled with cinnamon sticks. The resulting blends vary in texture, ranging from a porridge to a very thin, liquid consistency. Atole can also be prepared with riceflour, or oatmeal in place of masa. In northern Mexico, a variation is also made using pinole (sweetened toasted corn meal). Although atole is one of the traditional drinks of the Mexican holiday Day of the Dead, it is very common during breakfast and dinnertime at any time of year. It is usually sold as street food.

Atole served at the Atole Fair in Coacalco de BerriozábalState of Mexico

In Northern Mexico and South Texas, atole is a traditional comfort food. It is often eaten as a breakfast or an after dinner snack on cold days. In New Mexicoblue corn atole is finely ground cornmeal toasted for cooking, consumed as a grainy porridge-style drink served warm, usually sweetened with sugar and/or thinned with milk. It is usually served at breakfast like cream of wheat or oatmeal. Elders are said to have drunk atole because it gave them energy and if a mother is nursing it gives her more milk.[1] Salvadoran varieties include atol shuco (“dirty” atol, a reference to its darker color), particularly popular in the Cabañas region.[2] The Nicaraguanhomologue is pinolillo. In some parts of Honduras, fresh corn is ground and the expressed liquid is used as the base (instead of masa

). 1235  N LOOP 336 WEST CONROE TX 77301

Dioptase

Image result for Dioptase

Dioptase is an intense emerald-green to bluish-green copper cyclosilicate mineral. It is transparent to translucent. Its luster is vitreous to sub-adamantine. Its formula is CuSiO3·H2O (also reported as CuSiO2(OH)2). It has a hardness of 5, the same as tooth enamel. Its specific gravity is 3.28–3.35, and it has two perfect and one very good cleavage directions. Additionally, dioptase is very fragile and specimens must be handled with great care. It is a trigonal mineral, forming 6-sided crystals that are terminated by rhombohedra.

History

Dioptase was used to highlight the edges of the eyes on the three Pre-Pottery Neolithic B lime plaster statues discovered at ‘Ain Ghazal known as Micah, Heifa and Noah. These sculptures date back to about 7200 BC.

Late in the 18th century, copper miners at the Altyn-Tyube (Altyn-Tube) mine, Karagandy ProvinceKazakhstan thought they found the emerald deposit of their dreams. They found fantastic cavities in quartz veins in a limestone, filled with thousands of lustrous emerald-green transparent crystals. The crystals were dispatched to MoscowRussia for analysis. However the mineral’s inferior hardness of 5 compared with emerald’s greater hardness of 8 easily distinguished it. Later Fr. René Just Haüy (the famed French mineralogist) in 1797 determined that the enigmatic Altyn-Tyube mineral was new to science and named it dioptase (Greekdia, “through” and optos, “visible”), alluding to the mineral’s two cleavage directions that are visible inside unbroken crystals

Occurrence

Dioptase is an uncommon mineral found mostly in desert regions where it forms as a secondary mineral in the oxidized zone of copper sulfide mineral deposits. However, the process of its formation is not simple, the oxidationof copper sulfides should be insufficient to crystallize dioptase as silica is normally minutely soluble in water except at highly alkaline pH. The oxidation of sulfides will generate highly acidic fluids rich in sulfuric acid that should suppress silica solubility. However, in dry climates and with enough time, especially in areas of a mineral deposit where acids are buffered by carbonate, minute quantities of silica may react with dissolved copper forming dioptase and chrysocolla.

The Altyn Tube mine in Kazakhstan still provides handsome specimens; a brownish quartzite host distinguishes its specimens from other localities. The finest specimens of all were found at the Tsumeb Mine in TsumebNamibia. Tsumeb dioptase is mineral and often highly sought after by collectors. Dioptase is also found in the deserts of the southwestern US. A notable occurrence is the old Mammoth-Saint Anthony Mine nearMammoth, Arizona where small crystals that make fine micromount specimens are found. In addition, many small, mineral colored crystals of dioptase have come from the Christmas Mine near Hayden, Arizona. Another classic locality for fine specimens is Renéville, Congo-Brazzaville. Finally, an interesting occurrence is the Malpaso Quarry in and near Agua de Oro Argentina. Here tiny bluish-green dioptase is found on and in quartz. It appears at this occurrence, dioptase is primary and has crystallized with quartz, native copper, and malachite.

Use

Dioptase is popular with mineral collectors and it is occasionally cut into small emerald-like gems. Dioptase and chrysocolla are the only relatively common copper silicate minerals. A dioptase gemstone should never be exposed to ultrasonic cleaning or the fragile gem will shatter. As a ground pigment, dioptase can be used in painting.

The most famous (and expensive) dioptase mineral locality is at Tsumeb, Namibia.

SOURSOP

 

Soursop
Soursop, Annona muricata.jpg
A spiky green fruit growing on a tree
Soursop fruit on its tree
Scientific classificatione
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Magnoliids
Order: Magnoliales
Family: Annonaceae
Genus: Annona
Species: A. muricata
Binomial name
Annona muricata
L.
Synonyms
Annona macrocarpa Wercklé
Annona crassiflora Mart.[1]
Guanabanus muricatus M.Gómez
Guanabanus muricatus (L.) M.Gómez[2]
Annona bonplandiana Kunth
Annona cearensis Barb. Rodr.
Annona muricata Vell.[3]

A. muricata flower

Soursop fruit on a tree

Soursop (also graviolacustard apple, and in Latin Americaguanábana) is the fruit of Annona muricata, a broadleaf, flowering, evergreen tree.[4][5] The exact origin is unknown; it is native to the tropical regions of the Americasand is widely propagated.[6] It is in the same genus, Annona, as cherimoya and is in the Annonaceae family.

The soursop is adapted to areas of high humidity and relatively warm winters; temperatures below 5 °C (41 °F) will cause damage to leaves and small branches, and temperatures below 3 °C (37 °F) can be fatal. The fruit becomes dry and is no longer good for concentrate.

With aroma similar to pineapple,[5] the flavor of the fruit has been described as a combination of strawberries and apple, and sour citrus flavor notes, contrasting with an underlying creamy texture reminiscent of coconut or banana.

Soursop is widely promoted (sometimes as “graviola”) as an alternative cancer treatment, but there is no medical evidence it is effective for treating cancer or any disease.

The flesh of the fruit consists of an edible, white pulp, some fiber, and a core of indigestible black seeds. The pulp is also used to make fruit nectar, smoothies, fruit juice drinks, as well as candies, sorbets, and ice cream flavorings.[4][5]

Due to the fruit’s widespread cultivation and popularity in parts of Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, Southeast Asia and the Pacific, soursop and its derivative products are consumed across the world, also via branded food and beverage products available in many countries, including Brazil, Mexico, Canada, the United States, the UK, Ireland and Continental Europe, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam.

In Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela, and Harar (Ethiopia), it is a common fruit, often used for dessert as the only ingredient, or as an agua fresca beverage; in Colombia and Venezuela, it is a fruit for juices, mixed with milk. In Cuba, a thick smoothie made of soursop pulp, milk and cane sugar goes by the name of champola. Ice cream and fruit bars made of soursop are common.[4][5] The seeds are normally left in the preparation, and removed while consuming, unless a blender is used for processing.

In Indonesiadodol sirsak, a sweetmeat, is made by boiling soursop pulp in water and adding sugar until the mixture hardens. Soursop is also a common ingredient for making fresh fruit juices that are sold by street food vendors. In the Philippines, it is called guyabano, derived from the Spanish guanábana, and is eaten ripe, or used to make juices, smoothies, or ice cream. Sometimes, they use the leaf in tenderizing meat. In Vietnam, this fruit is called mãng cầu Xiêm (Siamese Soursop) in the south, or mãng cầu (Soursop) in the north, and is used to make smoothies, or eaten as is. In Cambodia, this fruit is called tearb barung, literally “western custard-apple fruit.” In Malaysia, it is known in Malayas durian belanda and in East Malaysia, specifically among the Dusun people of Sabah, it is locally known as lampun. Popularly, it is eaten raw when it ripens, or used as one of the ingredients in Ais Kacang or Ais Batu Campur. Usually the fruits are taken from the tree when they mature and left to ripen in a dark corner, whereafter they will be eaten when they are fully ripe. It has a white flower with a very pleasing scent, especially in the morning. While for people in Brunei Darussalam this fruit is popularly known as “Durian Salat”, widely available and easily planted.

Fun facts about Canadian currency

Fun facts about Canadian currency

Circulation coins

Over 1 billion circulation coins are minted each year at our high-tech plant in Winnipeg. The effigy of our monarch has appeared on every Canadian coin produced by the Mint since 1908. Reverse designs, however, have changed considerably over the years to reflect the changing face of our diverse culture.

Mintage refers to the quantity of coins produced in a given period and can influence the value of a coin: lower mintages tend to be more in demand because they are scarcer. The physical specifications of circulation currency are essential to an understanding of a coin’s history, composition and design. This information allows collectors to determine a variety of characteristics, particularly mintage.

Coin recycling makes cents

The Royal Canadian Mint is committed to recycling coins. Every coin put back into circulation is one less to produce, which makes recycling an efficient, cost-effective and environmentally friendly way to provide change to the marketplace.

Turn small change into found money and help the environment!

Pennies, nickels, dimes. quarters, loonies, toonies. Coins add up fast, yet often lie around in jars and drawers. Instead of leaving your hidden treasure to collect dust, why not recycle your spare change? Every coin recycled is one that doesn’t have to be produced – which helps to preserve the environment and reduces emissions caused by smelting and mining.

You’ll be amazed at how quickly your spare change adds up to something big!

Fun facts

A 4-litre pickle jar can contain:

4,992 pennies = $49.92

8,400 dimes = $840.00

3,411 quarters = $852.75

A Mint employee brought in a 4-litre pickle jar of small change that had been accumulating over the years. It contained over $1,000!

More than 67% of recycled coins are pennies

Coin counting machines turn your coins into cash, faster!

Take a look in your pockets, your piggy bank and your purse – and Coin recycling makes cents

http://www.yorktonthisweek.com/entertainment/local-a-e/fun-facts-about-canadian-currency-1.1522141