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Atlantic Watershed Jade Figure-Celt Pendant - PF.4785
Origin: Eastern Costa Rica
Circa: 100 AD to 500 AD
Dimensions: 4" (10.2cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Style: Atlantic Watershed
Medium: Jade

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The pale green of this pendant's stone is as lovely as the graceful carving. Worn by someone of high rank as a symbol of office, the artist who carved it was given the challenge of creating a figure of power on a small scale. With refined simplicity he accomplished this objective by giving such expression to the face using circular holes for the features. The shape of the head and nose are similar to that of a monkey, though there is something quite human in the figure's "presence", particularly in the way the hands curl up uniformly on either side of the chest, as if in a ritual posture. The "blade" portion could function as a sort of skirt or sarong worn perhaps by shamans in ceremony. This recalls certain gold objects from Costa Rica depicting shamans wearing animal masks as part of their ritual costume. It is a testimony to the lapidary skills of a talented artist, and the culture within which this pendant was made; that something held in the palm of one's hand could be so monumental. - (PF.4785)

 

 

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