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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Mayan Art : Mayan Stone Hacha
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Mayan Stone Hacha - PH.0279
Origin: Mexico
Circa: 300 AD to 900 AD
Dimensions: 11" (27.9cm) high x 7.5" (19.1cm) wide
Collection: Pre-Columbian Art
Style: Mayan
Medium: Stone


Location: United States
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Description
This Mayan Stone Hacha would have played a role in the ritual practice of a ball game, which had great ceremonial significance in the daily lives of ancient Mesoamericans. The ball game, perhaps ritually signifying the transit of the sun and moon between the celestial and terrestrial spheres, was an important event in Mesoamerican culture, considered necessary to maintain the cosmic cycle. The game was both a sport and a sacrificial ritual. Made out of heavy stone, the hacha was possibly used as an extra burden of weight to test the physical prowess of the player. In fact, relief sculptures and terracotta figures show axe-shaped objects attached to ball- players’ belts, which were used as deflectors and protectors. The game itself used a large rubber ball that could be hit by the elbows, knees or hips but could not be touched by the hands or feet. - (PH.0279)

 

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