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Poporo (Lime Container)

Arts of the Americas

On View: American Art Galleries, 5th Floor, The Americas’ First Peoples, 4000 B.C.E.–1521 C.E.
Poporo are containers used to hold powdered lime made from burnt seashells. Placed in the mouth with coca leaves, powdered lime activates the stimulant in the leaves. In ancient times, ceremonial gold containers were utilized by priests and elites in Quimbaya society.

The male and female figures on opposing sides of the vessel reflect the importance of duality in the Andean world.
CULTURE Quimbaya
MEDIUM Tumbaga (gold and copper alloy)
DATES 1-600 C.E.
DIMENSIONS 8 x 4 1/8 in. (20.3 x 10.5 cm)  (show scale)
COLLECTIONS Arts of the Americas
EXHIBITIONS
ACCESSION NUMBER 35.507
CREDIT LINE Alfred W. Jenkins Fund
RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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CAPTION Quimbaya. Poporo (Lime Container), 1-600 C.E. Tumbaga (gold and copper alloy), 8 x 4 1/8 in. (20.3 x 10.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Alfred W. Jenkins Fund, 35.507. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 35.507_female_SL1.jpg)
IMAGE detail, female side, 35.507_female_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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Quimbaya. <em>Poporo (Lime Container)</em>, 1-600 C.E. Tumbaga (gold and copper alloy), 8 x 4 1/8 in. (20.3 x 10.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Alfred W. Jenkins Fund, 35.507. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 35.507_female_SL1.jpg)