Pre-Columbian, Oaxaca, Mexico, Zapotec culture, Monte Alban, ca. 100 BCE to 200 CE. A fierce vessel in the form of a dog, his mouth open in a wide, round spout for liquid to flow through; the back of his neck is also open so that liquid could be poured into his swollen belly, which is the body of the vessel. He sits back on his haunches, with his front legs in an almost human gesture at his sides. A curled tail is against his back. Sharp teeth, round eyes, and pointed ears complete his head. Around his neck he wears a collar with a bell. The Zapotec, like many pre-Columbian civilizations, placed clay effigies into burials, often in the form of urns or vessels. Dogs in ancient Mesoamerica were believed to carry the newly deceased across a body into the afterlife, so dogs were a popular theme in funerary pottery. Size: 4.35" W x 8.15" H (11 cm x 20.7 cm)
Provenance: private southern California, USA collection, acquired in the 1970s to mid-1980s
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