c. 900–400 BC
Overall: 10.6 x 4.5 x 2.5 cm (4 3/16 x 1 3/4 x 1 in.)
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. James C. Gruener 1990.219
The Olmec were Mesoamerica's greatest lapidaries; their work in jade and serpentine was prized by both contemporary and later Mesoamerican cultures. Human beings were jaguar traits (such as the downturned mouth and paw-like hands of this figurine) are common in Olmec art. Such creatures were probably believed to possess supernatural powers.
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