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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Mayan Bowls, Plates and Vessels : Mayan Polychrome Bowl
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Mayan Polychrome Bowl - PF.3031
Origin: Honduras
Circa: 600 AD to 900 AD
Dimensions: 3.5" (8.9cm) high x 9" (22.9cm) wide
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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This ornate Mayan bowl is finely dressed in rich orange color, decorated with hieroglyphs on the exterior and repeated decorative patterns on the interior. Despite the esoteric nature of Mayan hieroglyphs, we know that Mayans had a unique obsession with time. They were fascinated by the never-ending flow of the cycle of time--the flow of days from eternity of the past into the eternity of the future. As if to represent such concept of time, the hieroglyphs encircle the bowl, like the eternal time cycle without an end. In addition, the complex Mayan hieroglyphic system indicates various names, dates, events, and even constellations. Such complex meanings incorporated with artistic, symbolic beauty from the ancient culture still amaze us in modern world. Moreover, the three registers of repeated, decorative patterns encircle the interior of the bowl, continuing the flow from the hieroglyphs. Mayans dedicated many of their wares, such as this bowl, to priests and gods. Although the Mayan hieroglyphs are yet to be deciphered, it is fascinating to wonder what dedicatory and symbolic meaning this beautiful bowl embodies. - (PF.3031)


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