Classification and Interpretation of Marine Shell Artifacts from Western Mexico
An investigation into the functional and symbolic uses of shells during the pre-conquest era in the Occidente region of Mexico. The author first provides a classification list of known examples, then proceeds to interpret those examples, giving information on provenance, find context, date and function. He concludes that the presence of shell artefacts in the region is the result of a deliberate selection of that material - since the species represented were of relatively little food value - for functional/symbolic purposes.
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Classification of Shell Artifacts 8
Interpretation of Univalves 39
Interpretation of Bivalves
6 other sections not shown
animal Anthropomorphic Anthropomorphic figurine Apatzingan archaeological archaeological contexts bivalve PROVENANCE body whorl bracelet burial carved Cerro del Huistle Chiapa de Corzo circular depressions Classic Codex Colima columella component of ornament concave conch shell context DATE unknown COMPARISONS Decorated disc-shaped piece Decorated ring-shaped piece edge eyes finger-loop FUNCTION component Furst gastropod PROVENANCE Jalisco Guadalajara head headdress holes for suspension Huichol ibid illustrated Infiernillo inlaid Jalisco DATE unknown Kaminaljuyu Kelly lip of gastropod material Mesoamerica Mexico D.F. Michoacan modified valve molluscs motifs Museo Regional Museum Nayarit necklace non-identified origin PROVENANCE Olguin ornament SHELL STRUCTURE outer lip perforation Pisote Playa del Tesoro Postclassic pottery figurines PROVENANCE Jalisco DATE representations San Sebastian shape shell trumpets siphonal canal species specimen in Fig spire Spondylus Strombus stylistic characteristics Suarez surface Templo Mayor Teotihuacan thick incised lines three-dimensional Tikal Tlaloc Tlatilco two-dimensional Uaxactun univalve unknown COMPARISONS Occidente valve of bivalve Whole Figurines zoomorphic