Diquis Gold Pendant of a Double-Headed Crocodile - FJ.6276
Origin: Costa Rican/Panamanian Border Area
Circa: 500 AD to 1550 AD

Collection: Pre-Columbian
Style: Diquis
Medium: Gold

Additional Information: 107.5 grams


Diquis goldsmiths developed a style of art that is truly unique and very beautiful. Whether the inspiration originated from the artists themselves, or was a result of established religious iconography is unknown. Along with the jaguar, the crocodile was one of the most popular themes. Here we see a two headed crocodile joined at the body and by short 'ropes' attached to their arms. The highly stylized elements very cleverly depict scaly skin by using a pattern of double spirals curled inwards along the spine. Rows of sharp 'thorns' along the outside edge of the arms and on the snouts continue the reptilian image. The most interesting aspect is each crocodile is biting into a monkey-like figure. Other pendants from the same period show human figures being chewed by alligators. There may be a symbolic meaning behind this depiction other than showing the struggle of the animal kingdom. Diquis pendants are not simple representations of nature, but are the outward expression of a complex world of symbolism with its own inherent logic and order. And though this system may never be fully understood, the absence of precise information does not take away from the gold's luster, and adds its own aura of mystery. L. 10cm(4IN) - (FJ.6276)



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