Cache vessel

Early Classic Period
A.D. 300–550

Object Place: Guatemala, Tiquisate area or Southern Highlands (?)


19 x 30.2 cm (7 1/2 x 11 7/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Earthenware: orange slip paint; specular hematite slip paint on orange slip on modeled area

Not On View





Cache vessel bottom is modeled on its front surface with the head of supernatural whose primary identifying characteristic is two knots over his mouth area. A tall, trapezoidal headdress-like element is incised with fine lines. A vertical line of curvilinear elements on each side of the face may symbolize fire, smoke or clouds. The remains of charcoal on the inside of the vessel suggest that offerings were burned prior to caching the vessel inside a building, burial or cave. See 1988.1250 for the lid of this cache vessel.


Between about 1974 and 1981, probably purchased in Guatemala by John B. Fulling (b. 1924 – d. 2005), The Art Collectors of November, Inc., Pompano Beach, FL; May 20, 1987, sold by John B. Fulling to Landon T. Clay, Boston; 1988, year-end gift of Landon Clay to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 25, 1989)

NOTE: This is one in a group of Maya artifacts (MFA accession nos. 1988.1169 – 1988.1299) known as the “November Collection” after John Fulling’s company, the Art Collectors of November, Inc. John Fulling sold this group of objects to MFA donor Landon Clay in 1987, and they were given to the Museum the following year.
Evidence suggests that John Fulling built the November Collection from sources in Guatemala between 1974 and 1981. Only a portion of what he acquired during this time came to the MFA in 1988. It is not possible to determine precisely which objects were acquired when or from whom.

Credit Line

Gift of Landon T. Clay