Calima Gold Pendant Depicting a Funeral Procession

SKU FJ.6270

800 AD to 1000 AD


3.75″ (9.5cm) high x 5.25″ (13.3cm) wide




Calima Region of Colombia

Gallery Location



The gold jewelry from Central and South America had many functions and was a highly significant artistic and ritualistic element of society. Important and wealthy individuals wore them during their lifetime, and then were interred with them so they could be taken on the journey into the afterlife. This extraordinary object is unique in the fact that it depicts an event actually taking place. The two figures carry a litter which holds a male baby. The men appear to be of the upper class wearing elaborate headdresses or crowns. Their expressions are decidedly sad, with their mouths in a frown. This leads to the conclusion that the infant is deceased. The posture of the child continues this impression, with his head shifted to one side and arms draped over the abdomen. It is possible this represents the funeral of a royal baby whose death was a serious blow to the dynasty. Double loops show this pendant lies in its superb artistry, capturing a moment of emotion with such feeling that is as poignant today as it was hundreds of years ago.

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