Male Dog

Male Dog

200 BC-AD 300

Earthenware with burnished red slip

Overall: 39.5 x 20.8 x 47.8 cm (15 9/16 x 8 3/16 x 18 13/16 in.)

Cornelia Blakemore Warner Fund 1964.37


One of the best-known subjects of West Mexican tomb sculpture is the native hairless dog, which is shown naturalistically-as here-but also wearing a human mask, signaling complex meanings.These meanings are not well-understood, but like later Mesoamericans, West Mexicans may have believed that dogs served as guides or guards in the underworld realm of the dead. For the living, they also served as food.

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