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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Pre-Columbian Masterpieces : Terracotta Chocolate Pot
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Terracotta Chocolate Pot - PF.4223
Origin: Costa Rica
Circa: 500 AD to 800 AD
Dimensions: 18.75" (47.6cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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Within an established format an artist can work their magic and let imagination create astonishing images. Tripod vessels were popular during this period, usually commissioned by members of the wealthy classes and used as funerary offerings. Some tripods have been found containing carbonized maize cob, which symbolized the funeral drink "chicha," a thick, fermented brew made from maize or palm-fruit. Chocolate was also placed in them, a drink which was highly valued by the nobility and costly as gold. Another use for the tripod vessel was as an incense holder, a function that must have been as spectacular when it was made, as it would be today. Imagine fragrant smoke rising from the funnel opening, with the three iguanas lifting their noses to catch the aroma. These reptiles blend beautifully with the long legs of the tripod, their tails tapering to a fine point. The iguanas are crafted with considerable skill, each given a personality of their own and very realistic in every detail. Wherever this magnificent vessel next stands it is certain to charm us with it’s own ritual magic. - (PF.4223)


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