Tetrapod cylinder vessel

Early Classic Period
A.D. 350–550

Object Place: Mexico or Guatemala, northern Petén lowlands


14.8 x 19.7 cm (5 13/16 x 7 3/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Earthenware: black slip paint

Not On View





This cylindrical base for a lidded vessel is embellished with two incised profile saurian heads, one on each side of the vessel (for a total of two heads). The four cylindrical supports are hollow and each contains a ceramic pellet that rattles when the vessel is moved. Four coffee bean-shaped nubbins are attached to the bottom edge of the vessel, placed equadistant between the tetrapod supports. The remains of red pigment on the unslipped bottom of the vessel like came from the burial environment. See 1972.1171a for the lid of this vessel. Also see 1972.1172a and b for a very similar vessel.


By June, 1972, Alphonse Jax (dealer), New York [see note]; September 13, 1972, sold by Jax to Landon T. Clay, Boston; 1972, gift of Landon Clay to the MFA. (Accession Date: December 13, 1972)

NOTE: The vessel was said at the time of the sale to have been brought into the United States in 1969.

Credit Line

Gift of Landon T. Clay