Maya conch shell, 761.

Visual material
1 item ; 12 x 29 x 7 cm.


Linking notes
Forms part of the Princeton Mesoamerican Collection (C0940).
Summary note
This conch shell, thought to come from the Yucatan, still contains red pigment from its use as the ink pot of a Maya calligrapher. The red letter hieroglyphs engraved into the body of the shell contain a date equivalent to March 17, 761 and the name of the Royal Calligrapher, "He of the Holy Books." This is the earliest dated American manuscript in the Princeton University Library.
Purchased from Alphonse Jax, a dealer in pre-Columbian art in New York City, in August 1970 and presented by Mr. and Mrs. Taplin to Princeton that same year.
Source acquisition
Gift of Frank E. Taplin, Class of 1937 and Mrs. Taplin.
Publications about
Alfred L. Bush. "Cover Note." Princeton University Library Chronicle 53, no. 3 (1991-92). pp. 345-48.
Cite as
Princeton Mesoamerican Manuscripts, no. 11, Manuscripts Division, Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections, Princeton University Library.
Other format(s)
Also available in an electronic format.
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Supplementary Information