Vessel showing an important dignitary holding a young feline


National Museum - New Delhi

National Museum - New Delhi
New Delhi , India

This is an open mouthed vessel in form of a man holding a young feline most probably an ocelot in his hands. The ocelot (Leoparduspardalis), also known as the dwarf leopard or wildcat, is a species of wild cat found predominantly in South and Central America. It is similar in appearance to a domestic cat, although its fur resembles that of a clouded leopard or jaguar. The animal-worshipping Moche people of ancient Peru used to revere the cats, often portraying them in their art. The man holding the animal is probably an elite shown wearing an elaborate cloak or poncho with beautiful patterns all over. The spiral pattern of the ear plugs and head turban attracts attention. Face shows tattoo pattern.


  • Title: Vessel showing an important dignitary holding a young feline
  • Creator: unknown
  • Date: 200/700
  • Location: Mochica, Peru
  • Physical Dimensions: h 27.5cm
  • Accession Number: 67.271

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