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Celt-Shaped Pendant

Celt-Shaped Pendant

c. 300 BC - AD 600

Jadeite

Overall: 15.2 x 5.4 cm (6 x 2 1/8 in.)

James Albert and Mary Gardiner Ford Memorial Fund 1972.4

Description

Costa Rican jade pendants may imitate the shape of axe blades (celts) used for agriculture. The pendants often take the form of "axe gods," creatures with human, bird, or animal traits. Jade carving was common in Costa Rica before ad 500, but then declined in importance. Gold eventually replaced jade as the region’s preferred luxury material.

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