mad in pursuit notebook


Mexican Yalalag Cross


Subject. This is a large silver pendant about 4 inches high. I bought it in Oaxaca, Mexico, years ago. The style is specific to the 16th-century mountain village of Yalalag, where the indigenous indios have transformed old Spanish designs into something distinctly Mexican. The design consists of a central "cross" and three pendants. In many cases the pendants are crosses. Here they are milagros, which represent gratitude for prayers granted (aka ex-votos).

The central winged heart symbolizes a soul ascending into heaven. The heart-and-sword symbol represents Our Lady of Sorrows. The man and woman milagros are kneeling in prayer.

Reference: Mexican Jewelry by Mary L Davis and Greta Pack (Austin: Univ of Texas Press, 1963).

Composition. Straight documentation, to show the construction and details.

Technical. I struggled with a couple ways to capture this shiny silver. I wound up hanging it from the "roof" of my EZcube light tent.

Camera Data

tech specs

Jul 18, 2012