Mural Fragment with Elite Male and Maguey Cactus Leaves

Mural Fragment with Elite Male and Maguey Cactus Leaves

500-550

Fresco on wall fragment

Overall: 83.2 x 116.2 cm (32 3/4 x 45 3/4 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1963.252

Description

This richly dressed elite male belonged to a row of identical figures who processed along the walls of a patio in one of Teotihuacán’s wealthy apartment compounds. He offers a chant or prayer, materialized in a mouth scroll, along with a flower-filled libation that cascades from one hand. In the other hand, he carries an incense bag. The thorny spines of the maguey cactus, in front and behind, may allude to the offering of precious blood and a ritual beverage made from the cactus’s sap (pulque, a less refined form of tequila). The spines are thrust into objects that may represent bundles or plots of land.

Video

The Imagery
The Imagery
See also
Collection: 
AA - Mesoamerica
Department: 
Art of the Americas
Type of artwork: 
Painting

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