Pendant with Seated Lord

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY

About the work

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Mayan artists mined precious stones from the Motagua River Valley. They searched for the most striated, unique, and vibrant pieces of jade, especially. An artist carved this small ornament from a bright green jade that tapers into blue-gray. A young lord is depicted in profile, a style characteristic of Mayan portraits. He sits on a throne and wears a feather headdress, thick bracelets, anklets, and a necklace. Mayan nobility were believed to have a closer connection to their gods than the common people. Jade was a sacred stone, therefore depicting nobles in jade reinforced this idea.

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