- Museum number
- Series: The Yaxchilan Lintels
Lintel 15: Carved limestone lintel with glyphs and a scene representing Lady Wak Tuun, during a bloodletting rite. She is carrying a basket with the paraphernalia used for auto-sacrifice: stingray spine, a rope and bloodied paper. The Vision Serpent appears before her springing from a bowl set before her which also contains strips of bark-paper.
- Production date
Height: 87.60 centimetres
Width: 82.60 centimetres
Depth: 10.70 centimetres
- Curator's comments
- McEwan 1994, p.46
The three lintels from Yaxchilan Structure 21 record Lord Bird Jaguar's enactment of the ritual depicted in lintels 24, 25 and 26, although they were arranged in a different order. This lintel repeats the vision stage of the bloodletting shown on lintel 25. The serpent coils up through a beaded blood scroll and from its mouth emerges an ancestor the lady has contacted in the rite.
- On display (G27)
- Exhibition history
The Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto 19/11/11 - 9/4/12
Canadian Museum of Civilization, Gatineau 17/5/12 - 28/10/12
- fairly good
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- Maudslay’s original sculptures, from Yaxchilán in Mexico and Copán in Honduras, were initially deposited at the Victoria and Albert Museum (known as the South Kensington Museum until 1899) in 1885. There appears to have been some lack of clarity over whether these were a gift, or a loan from Maudslay. With Maudslay’s permission, the original sculptures and a selection of casts were transferred to the British Museum, on the grounds their subject matter more properly fell within the British Museum’s purview. The deliveries took place on the 20th (originals) and 22nd (casts) of November 1893. The majority of the casts remained at the V&A, on the understanding that they too would be transferred to the British Museum as soon as space could be found for them. Continued confusion over the legal ownership of the collection (Maudslay, V&A or BM) – see correspondence V&A correspondence archive - probably explains why neither casts nor originals were registered at the time of their arrival. The issue was finally resolved with the transfer of the remaining casts to the British Museum for exhibition in 1923. The originals sculptures were therefore given a 1923 registration number, despite their having been present at the British Museum since 1893.
- Africa, Oceania and the Americas
- Registration number
- Additional IDs
Miscellaneous number: AOA 1886-314 (Compass number)
Previous owner/ex-collection number: 314-1886 (V&A)