Taino culture, Hispaniola, Greater Antilles, 800-1500 AD
Hardstone with lime concretions
Height : 7 cm
Provenance : Collected in the early 20th century
Smithsonian Institution, Washington
Merton Spimpson, New York
Publication : "KunstKammer"
(M. Doustar, 2017), n°90
The Taíno believed that zemis, gods of both sexes, represented by both human and animal forms, provided protection. That explains the great number of small zoomorphic and anthropomorphic amulets and pendants found throughout the Carribean. Sometimes the zemi is both human and animal, like the present example.
Carved in a calcerous stone, the head is strong with a prognathic lower jaw. When one turns the figure, it becomes a smiling frog. Two attachment holes on the back were used to wear the figure on a necklace. A beautiful example in excellent shape.
Price : 4.500 euros