Skip Navigation

Pair of Earplugs

Arts of the Americas

On View: Arts of the Americas Galleries, 5th Floor
These exquisite ear ornaments would have been worn by Chimú rulers as a symbol of their wealth and authority. On each the central figure, wearing a large headdress, circular earrings, and a wide collar ending in profile snake heads, sits on a double-headed serpent bench. His face is partially obscured by an awning decorated with repoussé birds and geometric designs. The long posts, which were inserted through the earlobes, are decorated with finely engraved geometric motifs alternating with birds, serpents, and other creatures.

Estos exquisitos ornamentos para las orejas pueden haber sido usados por gobernantes Chimú como símbolo de poder y autoridad. En cada uno, la figura central, llevando un gran tocado, aretes circulares, y un ancho collar terminado en cabezas de serpientes de perfil, aparece sentada en una banca en forma de serpiente bicéfala. Su cara está parcialmente oscurecida por un toldo decorado con pájaros en relieve y diseños geométricos. Los largos postes, que se insertaban en los lóbulos de las orejas, están decorados con motivos geométricos finamente grabados, alternando pájaros, serpientes y otras criaturas.
MEDIUM Hammered gold
DATES 1100 - 1500
DIMENSIONS 5 1/4 x 5 1/4 x 5 1/8 in. (13.3 x 13.3 x 13 cm)  (show scale)
COLLECTIONS Arts of the Americas
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Arts of the Americas Galleries, 5th Floor
CREDIT LINE Gift of the Ernest Erickson Foundation, Inc.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply.

Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please contact (charges apply).

For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch.

For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright.

If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
CAPTION ChimĂș. Pair of Earplugs, 1100 - 1500. Hammered gold, 5 1/4 x 5 1/4 x 5 1/8 in. (13.3 x 13.3 x 13 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the Ernest Erickson Foundation, Inc., 86.224.19a-b. Creative Commons-BY
IMAGE overall, 86.224.19a-b_bw_acetate.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.
Pair of Earplugs