Pre-Columbian Articles


Collecting Pre-Columbian

The first article in a series helping you understand how to become a Pre-Columbian collector.


"Pre-Columbian isn't very rare, or very expensive. They made thousands of pieces, of every style and culture. The price differences come with the quality differences. A 7" nice Colima flat, mint, made in the period 250 BC - 200 AD can be purchased for less than $200. A fine Colima Shaman, 15" tall, can cost $20,000. Same age, but a different animal entirely..."

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Pre-Columbian Gold - What you ain't buying...

There is more "Pre-Columbian" gold being offered for sale right now than ever before;
far more than was ever excavated. The amazing things about this are that

1. some of it is being sold;
2. the clowns buying it actually believe it's authentic, and
3. the thieves selling it don't even know how to describe what they're selling.

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Nayarit Pairs, and Spares

"We've always loved Nayarit and other pairs from western Mexico; although Colima and Jalisco ones are somewhat rarer. We buy nice ones whenever we're offered them.

But there's an interesting fact connected to them; the only true pairs are joined ones..."

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Colima Shaft Tomb Models

"In a November 1999 Pre-Columbian sale, Sotheby's of New York offered two pieces that were more than they knew. Lot # 314 was described as a Colima head vessel, and #315 as a Colima double head vessel; both from the Protoclassic period, 100 B.C. - 250 A.D..."

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An Unusual Mayan Bowl

"It's a fairly standard black background bowl from the Ulua valley of Honduras, late classic period, 550 - 850 A.D., but has what appears to be a hand, holding an object with fingers pointing upwards and extremely long nails. It's repeated on both sides, and has no glyphs at all - not even the P.S.S. ( Primary Standard Sequence) Only after a lot of looking and guessing did we happen to turn it upside down - and bingo..."

Read more about this unusual Mayan Bowl


Pre-Columbian Stones

"Today, there's a thriving business selling fake pre-columbian stone pieces. In auctions around the world, some galleries and especially on line, some of the most fanciful, elaborate and ridiculous fakes are being sold as authentic, guaranteed and absurdly bargain priced..."

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Another archeological mystery solved

For several years, Dr. Gordon Eckholm of the Museum of Natural History, N.Y.C. and I had been attempting to determine the meaning of these small female figures; I'd been getting a few of them regularly and they were quite distinctive, an unusual style of Chupicuaro "Pretty Lady".

Read more about this archeological mystery