Earth Movers

Archaeologists say Brazil's rain forest, once thought to be inhospitable to humans, fostered huge ancient civilizations. The proof is in the dirt.

Map: Showing rain-forest civilizationsBy MARION LLOYD

High along bluffs overlooking the confluence of the mighty Negro and Solimões Rivers here, supersize eggplants, papayas, and cassava spring from the ground.

Their exuberance defies a long-held belief about the Amazon. For much of the last half century, archaeologists