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Machu Picchu: A Civil Engineering Marvel Paperback – Oct 1 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 136 pages
  • Publisher: Amer Society of Civil Engineers (October 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0784404445
  • ISBN-13: 978-0784404447
  • Product Dimensions: 22.2 x 27.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 454 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #680,488 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Format: Paperback
For the University of Denver Water Law Review,
Vol. 6, Issue 1, Fall 2002
Coloradans Ken and Ruth Wright have teamed with Peruvian archeologist Alfredo Valencia to place back in working order the sixteen fountains of Machu Picchu. You can see for yourself.
The Inca were master water handlers. They chose Machu Picchu as a ceremonial center because the mountains and the river spoke to them of life-giving power. The Urubamba River far below snakes triangular around the base of Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu mountains. A saddle between these peaks cradles the temples, rock shrines, dwelling places, and agricultural terraces that dance between the clouds in early morning and emerge to sunlight by Noon.
Water at the center of it all. The paleo-hydrologic studies of the Wrights and Valencia reveal how the Inca predicated the design and construction of Machu Picchu upon the flow of a spring. From high on the side of Machu Picchu Mountain, a canal brings water across an agricultural terrace to the first fountain just above the Temple of the Sun. From there, sixteen fountains splash, spout, and sing down a staircase to the Temple of the Condor.
The May 2002, issue of National Geographic Magazine contains yet another map of Machu Picchu deriving from the Wright-Valencia partnership. This map shows how magnificent Machu Picchu must have looked with its thatched roofs uplifted to the condor sky.
Underneath your feet at every turn is the invisible sixty-percent of Machu Picchu. In their Civil Engineering book, Ken and Alfredo describe the genius of Machu Picchu's foundational structure. The Inca edifices and agricultural terraces stand the test of time because of careful drainage and methodical trenchwork.
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Format: Paperback
Great book that goes way beyond the standard guide book fare. It inspired me to make the trip after reading it, to see first hand how the ancient Inca Empire created a complete fortified city in the sky, to trace the old Inca trails by the watchtower, the drawbrige and into the main gate with the view of city and the peak beyond. Other travel books have beautiful pictures and "where to eat and where to stay" for this citadel but very little information on how the city itself came into being and survived.
City maps and commentary in the book are far better than you can get on-site. Don't leave home without it. Even if you are just an armchair traveler you will be amazed with the accomplishments of the Inca Empire.
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Format: Paperback
Abandoned for centuries and overgrown by dense subtropical forest, this awesome city in the sky has been the subject of speculation and conjecture since Hiram Bingham first disclosed it in 1911. Now, for the first time, the wonders of Machu Picchus' construction and water supply are revealed in a new book by Kenneth R. Wright and Alfredo Valencia Zegarra. Anyone who has read Bingham's Lost City of the Incas, or who has visited this ancient city of the Incas or who yearns to journey there, should read this new and searching volume that delves into and solves many of the mysteries of Machu Picchu. Why was it built, how the site was selected, and what were the critical criterial criteria that were met to make the ridge top site suitable for an alternate home for the Inca Pachacuti? Machu Picchu served as a residence, a fortress and a holy place. The developement of a water supply, the construction of terraces for agriculture and the remarkable and enduring granite structures were well concealed by its unique location. Near vertical cliffs, the roaring Urubamba river all contributed to the concealment of Machu Picchu from the Spanish invaders How an ancient people, without the written word, without instruments and steel tools so capably built and prospered there for more than a century is now revealed in this landmark book that will increase both the awe and respect of the reader for the Inca people.
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Format: Paperback
Don't let the title scare you if you are not an engineer. Reading through the book is like taking a stroll with the ancient men who planned, designed and built this great site. It is a "must take along" if you are planning a visit. Even if you cannot afford to visit, the book is worth the read to be able to admire the skills of ancient people.
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Format: Paperback
The story of Machu Picchu is a tribute to the prehistoric Native Americans who planned and built this mystical mountaintop royal estate for Emperor Pachacuti between AD 1450 and 1540. The authors have, at last, defined for scientists and layman alike what makes Machu Picchu such a beautiful and special place: the innumerable details of Machu Picchu, when combined into a whole, create a visual and spiritual experience that is unparalleled in the New World.
Properly, this book is dedicated to the young Yale explorer Hiram Bingham, John Rowe and Pat Lyons of the University of California/Berkeley, Richard Burger and Lucy Salazar of Yale University, and several others who had a hand in supporting the research work in both the United States and Peru.
Ten chapters, 160 photographs, many sketches and maps, in conjunction with a detailed index, provide both the scholar and casual tourist with a description of Machu Picchu that is a must-read before leaving Cusco for the trip down the Urubamba River to see this most important archaeological ruin of the Western Hemisphere. The book is designed so that much of the story can be appreciated even if one only looks at the photographs and reads the captions; much like a National Geographic magazine.
Chapter 1 explains the when, where and why of Machu Picchu along with it ancient climate. Site selection reasons are described; here you will learn why the Inca chose such a difficult site for construction and how the mountain and water played a major role in its choice. In Chapter 2, you will learn about the Inca-period planning that went into the royal estate so that it would function.
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