Feline Mortar

Feline Mortar

700 BC-1

Part of a set. See all set records

Stone, pigment

Overall: 5.8 x 11 cm (2 5/16 x 4 5/16 in.)

In memory of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Humphreys, gift of their daughter Helen 1957.494.a


Size suggests that this Chavín-style mortar and pestle, if functional, were not used to grind bulky staples like corn, but instead perhaps pigments or the hallucinogens apparently used in Chavín religious rites. This set may come from the highland site Pacopampa, which adopted Chavín deities and worshiped them alongside its own. Thus, these small sculptures illustrate the appeal and spread of Chavín religion.

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