Link to enlarge vase K7784 &#copy; Justin Kerr Charles Zidar

Family:  Malvaceae
Genus:  Gossypium
Species:  hirsutum
Authority:  L.
Common Name:  cotton
Maya Name:  Taman or algodon
Depictions:  Ear flares
Maya Plant Use:  Medicine or fiber Aside from the use of cotton in textiles, a tea made from its roots was used to ease the pain of childbirth. Today, the oil from the seed is used in oils, margarine and shortening (Dobelis, 1990).
Botanical Significance:  Cotton, being an integral part of the Maya wardrobe, is more readily found in Maya art and iconography that first assumed. The moist conditions of the Central American rainforest destroyed evidence of the wide use of cotton in ancient times, but polychrome ceramics attest to the fact that Maya royalty were elegantly dressed in cotton attire. Other species in this family are smoked similar to marihuana such as Sida acuta and Sida rhombifolia where the hallucinogenic component sphedrine is active.
Ritual Significance:  The cotton flower can be seen represented in these jade ear flares?
Notes:  Syn: G. mexicanum Tod.
Photos:  Click on an image below for high resolution comparison.

Other Plant Photos:

Additional views of the plant species, click on a photo below to view larger image.

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