Pre-Columbian, Central Mexico, Aztec empire, ca. 1300 to 1500 CE. A wonderful terracotta incensario of a clever design comprised of an openwork olla presenting curvilinear cloud or smoke plume motifs with a tastefully flared rim, supported by a pair of rounded rattle legs at one end and a long handle in the form of a delightful coyote with a separately modeled head inserted in an opening of the olla so that it bobbles and presenting an expressive visage with wide open eyes, a protruding snout with an open mouth, and perky ears. The coyote's body is attached to the body of the incensario in such a way that he appears to be leaning with outstretched legs and hands/paws pressed together over his abdominal area. What's more, he is bedecked with 'beaded' bracelets, baubles protruding from each ankle, and a sash tied around his waist. The coyote played an important role in Aztec society and was a patron of elite Aztec knights. Size: 8" W at widest (from coyote's feet to opposite end) x 5.25" H (20.3 cm x 13.3 cm)
Provenance: private California, USA collection
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Minute nicks to peripheries of one of the coyote's ears. Normal surface wear commensurate with age. Nice root marks and mineral deposits.