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Lot 0424
**Originally Listed At $750**

Pre-Columbian, Peru, Chavin culture, ca. 1200 to 500 BCE. A rare example of a poporo made from a creamy pinkish white shell with incised decoration on the body - pyramid and mountain forms - and a wooden piece inserted into the open side of the shell as a seal. Cinnabar pigment colors the incised lines. The shell has been drilled into - on its back center - to form a round hole. The wood seal and the mouth have gold leaf around them. A small hole drilled through the base is for suspension. Size: 3" L x 3.85" W x 2.95" H (7.6 cm x 9.8 cm x 7.5 cm)

From the earliest times, people in the Andes had a tradition of using coca leaves for ritual purposes. They were often ingested by placing some of the leaves in the mouth and adding a small quantity of powdered lime, ground from seashells. The poporo was a special vessel made to hold the lime. Like this example, they were often elaborately carved and decorated.

Provenance: private Hawaii, USA collection; ex-Hans Juergen Westermann collection, Germany

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

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#143629

Condition

Wear on surface commensurate with age, including scratching, chipping, and mottling of surface. Gold leaf has small losses around the edges. Overall in nice condition for its age!

Buyer's Premium

  • 24.5%

Chavin Carved Shell Poporo w/ Gold Leaf

Estimate $1,400 - $2,100Oct 17