WEST MEXICO, COLIMA, PRE-COLUMBIAN CA. 300 BCE TO 300 CE
This is a curved obsidian pectoral that would have been placed in a shaft tomb. The manufacture marks are clear around the body of the item; the front and back have been highly smoothed, and the shape tapers at the edges to almost translucence where there are two small holes drilled for suspension. Colima, located on Mexico's southwestern coast, was during this time part of the shaft tomb culture, along with neighbors to the north in Jalisco and Nayarit. In this culture, the dead were buried down shafts -- 3 to 20 meters deep -- that were dug vertically or near vertically through the volcanic tuff that makes up the geology of the region. The base of the shaft would open into one or more horizontal chambers with a low ceiling. These shafts were almost always dug beneath a dwelling, probably a family home, and seem to have been used as family mausoleums, housing the remains of many related individuals.
6.5 x 4 in. (16.5 x 10.2 cm.)
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