This seated ceramic figure comes from Pacasmayo (Jequetepeque) in north coastal Peru, the locus of important centers of the Moche (AD 100–800), Chimú (AD 1100–1470) and Inka (AD 1470–1533) states. The dignified male figure sits cross-legged with his hands resting on his knees. He wears a dome-shaped striped hat, a bracelet on each wrist, and large ear spools. His long braid extends down his back, from which a stirrup-shaped handle and spout extends. Joseph Beal Steere collected this vessel during his 1870–1875 U-M collecting expedition to South America and Asia. We lack precise information on the collection site of this vessel, but we know that similar seated ceramic figures with dome-shaped hats have been reported from the Moche period site of Dos Cabezas in the Jequetepue Valley and dated to AD 300–600.
In honor of the University of Michigan’s 2017 bicentennial, we are celebrating the remarkable archaeological and ethnographic collections and rich legacy of research and teaching at the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology by posting one entry a day for 200 days. The entries will highlight objects from the collections, museum personalities, and UMMAA expeditions. The Kelsey Museum of Archaeology is also posting each day for 200 days on Twitter and Facebook (follow along at #KMA200). After the last post, an exhibition on two centuries of archaeology at U-M opens at the Kelsey. Visit the exhibit—a joint project of the UMMAA and the Kelsey—from October 18, 2017 to May 27, 2018.