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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Mayan Bowls, Plates and Vessels : Mayan Terracotta Funerary Urn
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Mayan Terracotta Funerary Urn - PF.2559
Origin: Guatemala
Circa: 550 AD to 950 AD
Dimensions: 11.25" (28.6cm) high x 10.75" (27.3cm) wide
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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This ceramic urn, with dramatic molded facial image, is an exciting example of Mayan funerary art. For the Ancient Mayans death was journey, a series of trials with the lords of death. If defeated, the soul faced eternal extinction and burial in the evil world of Xibalba. However, if the deceased won, he or she would be able to leave Xibalba to take his or her place among other reborn ancestors, to assist and guide their descendants. The special imagery of death in Mayan culture is depicted on funerary art such as this extraordinary urn. Though its explicit meaning may be uncertain today, the impressive sculpted face on the urn, with its fierce jaguar- like teeth and striking monkey eyes and ears, nevertheless continues to manifest a magical and spirited aura, capturing our imagination and compelling us to commune with the spirits of the Ancient Mayans who created this potent work of art. - (PF.2559)


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