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A fabulous Moche-Chimu Shell Amulet, ca. 500 - 800 CE
Regular price$950 USD
This object qualifies for free USA shipping and a flat rate fee of $60 if shipping internationally.
Carved from gorgeous white and berry-red spondylus shell, this anthropomorphizing amulet has an upturned human head with long extended tongue, canine ears, and deeply drilled eye sockets that would have been inlaid with beads. The body is depicted as a quadruped, probably a dog, standing on a flat base with an upturned tail, the surface drilled for turquoise inlays, one of which remains, and pierced through the center of the body for suspension.
Spondylus shell was highly prized by all Pre-Columbian cultures, even more so than gold. The spondylus shell (thorny or spiny oyster) was found in Pacific coastal waters from Panama to Northern Peru and was traded extensively throughout the Americas. The careful carving of this vibrant example exemplifies the ceremonial importance and ritual significance of the Spondylus. When carved, the shells revealed layers of vibrant colors in white, orange and pink. Andean cultures used complete spondylus shells in ceremonial rituals and they were also cut into smaller pieces and used in jewelry, inlays, as trade currency and placed in burials.
Condition: Intact and in very good condition overall.
Provenance: ex: Joel Malter collection, assembled in the 1980s, thereafter a private Canadian collection, acquired from the trade in 2009.
We ship Tuesday to Friday with FedEx and usually same day if your order is received before 2pm. Within the continental USA, packing, shipping and insurance is free. Depending on size and destination, delivery times range from one to five business days.
For overseas shipments we charge a small flat rate which includes packing, preparation of all customs paperwork, insurance and carrier fees in compliance with all USA and International customs requirements. Overseas shipments are sent using either USPS Priority Mail or FedEx but contact us if you have a shipping preference. International customers are responsible for all duties and taxes.