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The Mimbres Twins and the Rabbit in the Moon presentation by archaeologist Marc Thompson, PhD
This presentation documents illustrations from Classic Mimbres Black-on-white ceramic bowls (1000-1130 CE) depicting the Panamerican apologue of the Hero Twins saga. These motifs account for about 12% of Mimbres figurative bowls and can be arranged in a narrative sequence from birth, trials, tests, death, and resurrection of the Hero Twins, to apotheosis as the sun and the moon. In this saga, the Hero Twins survive the tests, trials, and ballgame challenge through guile, cunning feats, and as tricksters of legerdemain. This tale, the characters, and the basic plot are known throughout North, Central, and South America. The deep, fundamental basis of the story revolves around dualities as in two sides of the same coin; they include life and death, dark and light, and male and female. Cognate Hero Twins motifs, both graphic and recorded, are documented on Classic Maya ceramics (200-900 CE), in the 16th century Twins’ saga of the Popol Vuh book of the Maya, and in US southwestern traditional tales. Comparing these similar, but ethnically distinct accounts allows for a fuller comprehension of these emblematic, evocative, heroic figures.

Apr 21, 2022 07:00 PM in Arizona

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