Mayan Female Figurine - PF.6082
Origin: El Salvador
Circa: 300 AD to 900 AD
Dimensions: 9.5" (24.1cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Style: Mayan
Medium: Terracotta


There is a powerful divine presence radiating from within this work. She watches over us as she once watched over a deceased Mayan king. Seated with her hands resting on her knees, this female figure emits an aura much greater than her stature would suggest. She wears elaborate jewelry, including a beaded necklace with a central skull-shaped pendant (perhaps symbolizing her supernatural powers), bracelets, circular ear ornaments, and a long flaring skirt. Most prominent, however, is her dramatic arching headdress that frames her face. The headdress has been elegantly modeled after the original crown that no doubt once existed. Bits of light blue and white polychrome are still intact along small bits of the headdress, her skirt, and her face, suggesting that the whole of this sculpture was once brilliantly painted. Who does she represent? A god? A protective spirit? A deceased relative? Any of these answers might be correct; however, the most revealing factor to the identity and importance of this figurine is the location of its discovery. Found in a tomb, buried alongside a fallen ruler or dignitary, this sculpture was clearly as necessary to have in the afterlife as it was in this world. - (PF.6082)



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