🔎 UNIDENTIFIED Rare Etched Pre-Columbian Bowl?

TreasureHunter02

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Recently purchased this Pre-Columbian piece at a small local auction and was hoping I could receive some insight on it. It is said to be Mexican but that is all I have. I've tried to research to see if there are any similar pieces but have been unsuccessful. Any help is appreciated!

IMG_0220.jpg IMG_0221.jpg IMG_0222.jpg IMG_0223.jpg IMG_0224.jpg
 

GoldieLocks

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I believe this is Myan influenced, but dating it is going to be tricky given anyone could have used such a design from a Myan period to date. You would almost have to be able to carbon date the actual pottery. I don't think that can be done at all. On Mesoamerican Mexican site origins of pots and other ceramics show most having red ocre color mixed fully coloring the pottery very red.
 
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DCMatt

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I believe this is Myan influenced, but dating it is going to be tricky given anyone could have used such a design from a Myan period to date. You would almost have to be able to carbon date the actual pottery. I don't think that can be done at all. On Mesoamerican Mexican site origins of pots and other ceramics show most having red ocre color mixed fully coloring the pottery very red.
I agree. It looks Mayan influenced. A cacao drinking cup. But it's very crude by Mayan standards. I would consult an expert in the field to find out more info.
 
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CreakyDigger

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I hope an expert confirms your purchase as authentic - it's dang cool whatever it is.
 
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DizzyDigger

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The etching appears modern, added later and was crudely scratched out.

I know little about this type of pottery, but it does seem logical that
if the etching were done at the time it was made it should show the
same patina/aging as the rest of the exterior.
 
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Emil W

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I know little about this type of pottery, but it does seem logical that
if the etching were done at the time it was made it should show the
same patina/aging as the rest of the exterior.

I agree. There's no doubt the patina in the etching would have to match the rest of the piece. The engraving is modern. Without examining the piece in person it's impossible to say if the engraving was added to a genuine artifact or if the overall piece is modern, but it does look like it's potentially real. Unfortunately, if it's real with modern etching it has no real value. I generally use a microscope to look for dendritic crystal structures that only occur over time. That's usually enough to confirm that an item is at least not modern as it requires many years of constantly changing moisture and mineral conditions to form these crystal structures.

I have close to 100 pre-Columbian pieces although I don't really collect them, so I'd consider myself a novice as far as styles and cultures go. My expertise is in Bronze Age through Greek and Roman period pottery and bronze and they make up a majority of my antiquities collection.
 
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GoDeep

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To add ,, the feet look suspect to me too,. They are crude and just pushed on and the raidus's built up by pushing clay in where they attach to give them more support, like a beginner school pottery class would do. I would say it was a school pottery class piece that was later carved.

If you look at this pre columbian piece, it's more what you'd expect on the feet, more integrated and streamlined, not an afterthought.

precolumbian.jpg
 
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unclemac

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that etching was done with a rotary tool... and is that a speech bubble coming out of his mouth?...really?
 
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GoDeep

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that etching was done with a rotary tool... and is that a speech bubble coming out of his mouth?...really?
Might be blowing a bubble with bubble-yum!
 
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Treasure_Hunter

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As others have said, the patina should be uniform in the etching and it isn't.
 
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