Tuesday, September 25, 2012

From the Museum

Moleadores are fired clay artifacts that are found in many locations around the Llanos de Mojos, in the Bolivian Amazon. They are roughly 20 cm long, 10 cm wide, and often show signs of having been worn down on two sides (rarely on three). They are particularly common along the Apere River, to the west of the Mamoré River. They might have been used for grinding some kind of food. It is perhaps less likely that they were used for pounding, since many are worn in comparison to how many are found broken. They often have patterns of lines incised into the surface, incisions which are worn off through use. Ethnographic accounts speak of clay supports for cooking pots, and it is possible that moleadores were used for this, although they rarely show any sign of having been repeatedly burned. This example is from the collections of the Museo Yacuma, in Santa Ana del Yacuma.

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