Bead: monkey profile

500–200 BCE
more object details

General Description

The carved stone images Olmec kings wore on their foreheads and chests projected supernatural power. This carved jadeite bead in the shape of a monkey would have originally been suspended from a necklace as indicated by the drilled hole at the back of the figure's head. Deeply incised lines indicate the facial features and arms of the figure. The monkey appears in profile, with the hands clasped across the chest. Objects such as these often accompanied the king on his journey through death to the otherworld.

Elaine Higgins Smith, Digital Collections Content Coordinator, 2015.

Drawn from

  • Carol Robbins, Label text [1968.20], A. H. Meadows Galleries, 2010.

  • Getty Vocabulary, AAT (pendants (jewelry): AAT: 300046002).