Engraved Top of Rattle


Marquand, United States

  • Artist
  • Artwork Comments 10

Artist's Description

This is the top of a rattle that is made from the skull bone of a human. It was probably fitted to the round part of a tortoise shell with a wooden handle. They used different materials from nuts to stones inside the rattle to achieve different sounds. Because this is a human skull bone it was very likely an important ceremonial piece for the people who made it. It could have been from an ancestor or an enemy. It is from the Mississippian Period – 1000 BC – 1600 AD

American Indian archeology has been divided into basically four time periods by archeologists – The Paleo Period – Prehistoric to 20,000 years BC – Archaic Period – 20,000 to 10,000 years BC – Woodland Period 10,000 BC to 1000 AD and the Mississippian Period – 1000 AD to 1600 AD

The Paleo period was primarily found in the American southwest because of the cold that existed over much of the north part of America at that time. The later Paleo and other periods spread across the entire continent.

The woodland period was when the Indians started growing crops and staying in one location instead of traveling and hunting all the time. Their stone work was of a much poorer quality but they started making pottery from clay. They tempered their pottery with sand so it didn’t last like the later period pottery did.

During the Mississippian period the American Indians began to come together into tribes from their former existence as extended family groups.

Artwork Comments

  • stephaniek
  • Carol  Lewsley
  • Eyeleen
  • Keith Richardson
  • Karin Taylor
  • Enivea
  • Susan McKenzie Bergstrom
  • NatureGreeting Cards ©ccwri
  • NatureGreeting Cards ©ccwri
  • barnsis
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