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Mythical twins carrying box, Xalapa Museum of Anthropology

’The Twins’ ceramic figures carrying box, Rio Blanco-Papaloapan culture, El Zapotal, Veracruz, 600-900 CE, Xalapa Museum of Anthropology, Mexico, 0.66m high.

The personages represented here may have been twins, probably the pair that participated in important mythical scenes in pre-Hispanic narratives and legends. In the Post-Classic period, twins were associated with Quetzalcóatl, the divine twin par excellence. In the present case, the sculptured individuals are carrying a box that could be a ceremonial brazier or perhaps a container for sacred relics. Their attire is quite brief and is limited to an elegant headdress on which we see a shell, an attribute characteristic of the Feathered Serpent. In addition, they are wearing simple loincloths painted in black, plus a sort of bow tie around the neck. When observing the sandals, notice how the foot of one steps on that of the other, possibly as an indication of supremacy.

From Xalapa Museum of Anthropology - a Guided Tour, text by Rubén Morante López, Gobierno del Estado de Veracruz/Universidad Veracruzana, Xalapa, 2004, p. 164.

Photo by Karel Baresh/Mexicolore.