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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Mayan Bowls, Plates and Vessels : Copador Style Mayan Polychrome Bowl
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Copador Style Mayan Polychrome Bowl - PF.5654
Origin: El Salvador/Guatemala/Honduras
Circa: 300 AD to 900 AD
Dimensions: 3.25" (8.3cm) high x 8.375" (21.3cm) wide
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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A painted frieze of five seated figures decorates the exterior rim of this tapering vessel. They all wear extravagant headdress that protrude from the back of their heads, appearing in shape like a woven basket, and project forward over their faces like an antenna. They all hold out their exaggerated, large hands as if making an offering. Ear ornaments are clearly visible on each figure. Occasionally, an object similar in form to the number “3” appears in front of their hands. A red ring is painted above and below the tapering point of the bow-shaped object. The meaning of this motif remains a mystery. Meanwhile, a frieze of turkeys, a vital staple of the Mayan diet, fills the interior rim of this bowl. Painted with red tail feathers and necks, they carry in their beaks what appears to be a black worm. There must be some significance between the varied motifs. How do the seated man and the turkey relate to each other? Found inside a tomb, buried along side a ruler or an important dignitary, this vessel, probably used in ceremonies, was as essential in the afterlife as it was in this world. - (PF.5654)


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