Nov 13, 2009

Tunic with Profile Animal and Human Heads

Tunic with Profile Animal and Human Heads

c. 700–1100

Tapestry weave: wool

Average: 97.8 x 99.1 cm (38 1/2 x 39 in.)

Gift of John Wise 1949.12



Wari tunics are made of two long panels folded at the shoulder line and stitched together at center and side seams, with openings left for the head and arms. The looms on which the panels were woven measured about 80 x 20 inches, with the warps spanning the short dimension. Thus, the warps are horizontal rather than vertical in the garment as it was worn. This orientation is unusual and seems to have influenced the construction of later Inca tunics. In this example, the imagery comprises two profile heads that alternate, one a human and the other an animal that may represent a deer or a bat. Such tunics were luxury goods worn only by privileged persons.

See also
T - Pre-Columbian
Type of artwork: 
Credit line: 
Gift of John Wise

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.