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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Archive : Pre-Columbian Art / Gold Bat Pendant
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Pre-Columbian Art / Gold Bat Pendant - FJ.6203
Origin: Colombia
Circa: 800 AD to 1600 AD
Dimensions: 4.5" (11.4cm) high x 5.75" (14.6cm) wide
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Gold


Additional Information: sold 337 grams

Location: United States
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Description
Animal symbolism was an essential part of the complex man-animal mythology of Central and South America, and the bat was one of the most important. The intensity of this pendant is quite extraordinary. Its power is achieved through the use of vertical extensions, in the form of arms and legs, juxtaposed with the horizontal strength of the body. Though most definitely a bat, the zoomorphic elements add mystery and dimension. The bat's hands are those of a dragon or stylized crocodile head; while its arms are the dragons' bodies, twisting and turning in wonderful curves. Sharp scales along the bat's shoulders are matched by its very menacing teeth and pointed ears; reminiscent of Vampire bats. The zoomorphic element is continued in the serpent heads used for feet, and also at the ends of the mythical tails. This pendant was probably made for someone of importance and authority. Chiefs, warriors and shamans used their ornamentation as symbols of rank in society. This pendant's forcefulness and majestic strength, combined with wonderfully inventive artistry, creates a masterpiece of design fit for a king. - (FJ.6203)

 

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