Art of the Ancient Americas
Artist: Unknown

Standing Warrior with a Trophy Head

A.D. 900–1200

Volcanic rock

38.1 x 20.96 x 12.7 cm (15 x 8 1/4 x 5 in.)
Gift of the Olsen Foundation
1958.15.6
Images of trophy bearers carrying an axe in one hand and a severed head in the other commonly occur in Costa Rican sculpture. The head that this warrior is holding, smaller than life-size, may be a shrunken one. Trophy heads were given as prizes in the ballgame, suggesting that this trophy bearer might have been a ballgame victor, his belt perhaps echoing a ballplayer’s yoke.
Culture: 
Costa Rica, Atlantic Watershed, Guapiles
Period: 
Period VI
Classification: 
Sculpture
Status: 
Not on view
Bibliography: 

Jorge A. Lines, Ancient Art from Costa Rica, exh. cat. (Claremont, Calif.: Scripps College, 1953).

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.