Gold Museum of Peru and Weapons of the World

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Thick gold plate for wall cladding. Inca Culture
Golden Mask of the Sican culture, Peru
Golden Weasel of the Frías culture, Peru
Nose ring of the Moche culture.

In the 1960s, Miguel Mujica Gallo used his private collection, gathered throughout his life, to open a museum. The "Gold Museum of Peru and Weapons of the World", located in the district of Santiago de Surco, Lima, Peru, is a two-story building (5205.285.27502) made of reinforced concrete and accessed through a vault-style entrance. The museum was donated to the state of Perú by Gallo and is now administered by Foundation Miguel Mujica Gallo, which is currently directed by Victoria Mujica Diez Canseco[1].

Gold of Peru[edit]

Gallo's acquisition of the Peruvian contents, more than seven thousand pieces, was inspired by an admiration for the history of Peru. This prominent collector desired to leave a legacy to this country of goldsmiths from ancient times, as homage to the Peruvian pre-Colombian cultures in its various manifestations containing materials such as precious metals like gold, silver and some of platinum, multiple textiles, ceramics, mummies, and other valuable objects of the time, thus preventing these items of cultural heritage from being lost forever.

The collection demonstrates what the Spanish found when they came to South America, resulting in the encounter between the ancient Peruvians and the Spanish. This place has its own value in Peru because it its value is over $10 million. The works exhibited in the museum have been found mostly in the Republican era and acquired at the time by Miguel Mujica Gallo. Through them, it has been known not only advances in metallurgy, customs, beliefs, and life was like in those cultures.

Gold and silver are ubiquitous in the complex religious and magical symbolism of all Peruvian cultures. For pre-Inca civilizations, these metals represented a constant duality: sun-moon, day-night, male-female. In the Inca Empire, the sun god or Inti represented sovereignty on the divine plane and Mama Killa ("mother moon"), the moon goddess, was Inti's wife, mother of the sky. The Temple of the Sun is an order of priestesses worshiped.

The forms that these metals acquired indicated the seniority and power of those who used it in his life and the importance that they won in their burials. The ancient Peruvians developed techniques unknown to Europeans at the time, such as adding color to other metal surfaces with gold or silver plating.

All pre-Incan cultures were goldsmiths of these metals, but only four of them stood out at the highest level. In this classification, include the cultures Vicus, Moche, Sican and Chimu that it developed on the northern coast of Peru. Subsequent to these cultures emerges the Inca Empire that is richer in possession of metal objects in gold and silver and the quality and finesse of its finished.

Victoria Mujica, referring to historical documents found in the Archive of the Indies, cites one that says:

“ In the magnificent temple of Koricancha (Cusco) was a solid gold disc the size of a wagon wheel representing the sun god, golden idols-size human figure with gold and silver llamas also life-size and many of the same metal plates covering the walls of the temple".

Weapons of the world[edit]

Sword of Alexander I, Tsar of Russia and sword of Ferdinand VII, King of Spain
Golden Glove of the Sican culture
Ceremonial bag of the Frías culture

Proceeds from his numerous travels abroad, Miguel Mujica Gallo was also collecting different weapons in the world, the oldest dating from the 13th century. C. He was a regular buyer in all major auctions where any.

Twenty thousand weapons of all times and countries are exhibited in the museum, then for quantity, quality, superb condition and the famous original holders of these parts can be considered one of the world's foremost in this specialty, product of the efforts of private collectors of the founder of this museum.

In its environments, as well as weapons, can be seen war uniforms, horse saddles, armor, spurs and other objects that define the early through time and characters of history for more than three thousand and three hundred years.

Accusations of fake artifacts[edit]

In the early 2000s, there were accusations that a vast majority of gold pieces in the museum at the time were false.[2] The BBC reported that "The Consumer Defense Institute has examined 4,257 artifacts from the Peruvian Museum of Gold and concluded they were 'false without a shadow of a doubt'.[3]


  1. ^ "Fakes In Peru's Gold Museum". Forbes. 2002-01-09. Retrieved 2017-11-03. 
  2. ^ Fakes In Peru's Gold Museum Retrieved 2017-08-04
  3. ^ Peru museum's 'fake' gold Retrieved 2017-08-04

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 12°06′28″S 76°57′59″W / 12.10778°S 76.96639°W / -12.10778; -76.96639