Maya. <em>Seated Figure</em>, ca. C.E. 550-850. Shell, 3 1/2 x 3in. (8.9 x 7.6cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of The Guennol Collection, 2002.33. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2002.33a-b_front_PS2.jpg)

Seated Figure


Medium: Shell

Geograhical Locations:

Dates:ca. C.E. 550-850

Dimensions: 3 1/2 x 3in. (8.9 x 7.6cm) Box: 2 1/2 x 5 1/4 x 6 1/4 in. (6.4 x 13.3 x 15.9 cm)


Museum Location: Luce Visible Storage and Study Center, 5th Floor


Accession Number: 2002.33

Image: 2002.33a-b_front_PS2.jpg,

Catalogue Description:
Carved and incised shell (possibly a conch) plaque of a seated figure in silhouette, probably a Maya lord mounted on a Plexiglas base. A bar with seven glyphs rests on his right leg. It has been suggested that picture plaques such as these may have been presented to high-status visitors to Maya domains as prestige items that reinforced political alliances. Or they may have been burial items placed in the tomb of the depicted ruler. The first two glyphs read "His Pendant", and probably the ruler's name follows. Drilled depressions at the ear and chest held inlays and the figure also once wore a detachable headdress. Condition: There is a clean break on the torso, part of which is lost. Parts of the proper left leg and the head of headdress are lost. Areas at top and bottom of glyph column are darkened, as is the area on the bottom, proper right of the figure.

Brooklyn Museum