Face with small sunken eyes, flat nose, moustache and open mouth with tongue sticking out; wearing headband with quatrefoil medallion at front

Mask, c. 250-600

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The Putnam Dana McMillan Fundexpand_more  99.3.1

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This stone mask represents one aspect of the Maya jaguar god. Such masks, often made of stone, wood or copper, were used in rituals by high-ranking members of society. Mask wearers were ceremonially transformed into the being portrayed and could interact with the spirit world. The jaguar god, one of the Mayas' most powerful deities, represented night, shadows, war, and sacrifice. He is identified by the three dots on each cheek of the mask, symbolizing the spots of a jaguar. Royalty used jaguar motifs and images on a variety of items, including clothing, jewelry, armor, and masks, to demonstrate their power and emphasize their relationship with the god.

Details
Title
Mask
Role
Artist
Accession Number
99.3.1
Curator Approved

This record has been reviewed by our curatorial staff but may be incomplete. These records are frequently revised and enhanced. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email collectionsdata@artsmia.org.

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Face with small sunken eyes, flat nose, moustache and open mouth with tongue sticking out; wearing headband with quatrefoil medallion at front