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Home » archaeology » Mississippian dot and concentric circle motif

Mississippian dot and concentric circle motif

My Wednesday post occasioned a most informative and enlightening Facebook thread. Contributors included Jay Franklin, Lynne Sullivan, Chris Rodning, and (especially) Adam King.

Adam pointed out the resemblance of motif seen on the cazuela rim sherds recovered at 40Wg143 to the so-called eye of the snake element that dominates Brakebill, Carter’s Quarter, and Citico style gorgets. A set of concentric circles (indicated in the paired images below via yellow ovals) surround an open dot (indicated in the paired images below via maroon ovals). A ring of dots (indicated in the paired images below via black arrows) sits in the space between the outermost engraved/incised circles. 

Brakebill

Gorget image adapted from Fig. 4 of Mark M. Crawford III’s 2013 MTSU senior thesis “Iconographic, spatial, and temporal patterning in ‘rattlesnake’ gorgets from the Southern Appalachian Highlands”; rim sherd image courtesy of Jay Franklin.

Though the cazuela fragments have yet to be cross-mended, it initially appears that the rim includes four examples of the dot/concentric circles motif. That would mark another shared design feature among the gorgets and the Cane Notch vessel.

Brakebill

Gorget image adapted from Fig. 4 of Mark M. Crawford III’s 2013 MTSU senior thesis “Iconographic, spatial, and temporal patterning in ‘rattlesnake’ gorgets from the Southern Appalachian Highlands.”

Fun stuff. My thanks to everyone who contributed to the original thread.

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