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Eccentric flint

Eccentric flint
Late Classic period (AD 600-900)
Guatemala : Maya style
Brown flint, traces of white stucco and red paint
h. 30.5 x w. 17.5 x d. 1.5 cm
UEA 708

Elaborately knapped flints, known as eccentrics for the diversity of their shapes, have been recovered from burials in the Maya region. In this example, seven profile heads extend outwards from the central shaft, with the possibility, on the upper right, of an eighth, from which the profile features have been broken.

Although flints shaped into crescents and other geometric forms are relatively common, flints with anthropomorphic forms such as this example are rare. Complex forms are difficult to shape from a material as brittle as flint, and is probable that they were created by specialist craftsmen.

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