From evidence left to us, it seems Ancient Belize
sculptors devoted much of their energies to
figural works in stone as funerary
accouterments. Their skills in depicting animals
however were remarkable, and this very fine
turtle is an excellent example of such artistry.
The carapace is carefully modeled with the
characteristic hexagonal shapes, at front it
curves upwards, and at rear an indentation
shows the separation between body and shell.
Delicate flippers seem life-like, as does the head
with its expressive eyes and mouth slightly open
as if about to bite into a juicy leaf. The stone is
quite soft to the touch, its mottled surface
amazingly like that of a turtle. This turtle's
realism comes not only from cleverly sculpting,
but also from a love of the animal itself. L.