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THE VALUES OF CLASSIC MAYA JADE: A REANALYSIS OF CANCUEN'S JADE WORKSHOP

  • Chloé Andrieu (a1), Edna Rodas (a2) and Luis Luin (a3)

Abstract

Most ancient Maya jade workshops have been discovered in the Motagua Valley, the region where the majority of known Mesoamerican jade sources are located; whereas in the Maya lowlands, evidence of jade production has primarily been in the form of finished objects or, in a few cases, of jade debitage in construction fill and cache contexts. At Cancuen, however, a large jade preform production area was discovered in the heart of a major lowland Maya site. In this paper we present the technological reanalysis of this material and show that the quality and color of the raw material corresponds to very different production processes, values, and distribution within the site. We suggest that most of Cancuen's jade production was exported to recipient sites as preforms and discuss the importance of this organization for understanding the nature of wealth goods production and exchange in the ancient Maya world.

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E-mail correspondence to: chloe.andrieu@mae.u-paris10.fr

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THE VALUES OF CLASSIC MAYA JADE: A REANALYSIS OF CANCUEN'S JADE WORKSHOP

  • Chloé Andrieu (a1), Edna Rodas (a2) and Luis Luin (a3)

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