**Originally Listed At $600**
Pre-Columbian, North Coast Peru, Chancay, ca. 800 to 1200 CE. A very large wooden earspool that is extensively decorated with shell inlays. In the central roundel is a stylized zoomorphic figure - perhaps a monkey eating a fruit - delineated in shell of coral pink and creamy white hues with fine line incised detailing of eyes, nose, paws, coat, and tail. Surrounding this is a band of eight shell inlays in iridescent mother of pearl and shells of coral and blue hues. Personal ornamentation was a significant mark of status for ancient Peruvian cultures, and sizeable ear ornaments like this example were reserved for nobles. In fact, when the Spanish invaded Peru, they called the Inca elite orejones - meaning big-eared. Size: 2.375" L x 2.125" in diameter (6 cm x 5.4 cm)
Provenance: private Probst collection, Monterey, California, USA, acquired mid-1970s to mid-1990s
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Expected wear commensurate with age. Small piece of textile remaining on back end of plug. Earthen deposits on wooden plug. Minute nicks/chips to shell inlays, but otherwise well preserved.