Corn Maiden Sisters
Corn Maiden Sisters
Corn Maiden Sisters
Corn Maiden Sisters

Corn Maiden Sisters

zf00981

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Zuni carver, Carl Etsate, carefully carved these Corn Maiden sisters on a shell.  One sister has a turquoise face with jet eyes and mouth.  The other sister has a jet face with inlaid turquoise eyes and a coral mouth. The shell is delicately engraved with corn kernels, some of which are inlaid with dots of turquoise, lapis, and coral.  More about corn maidens below.

Size: 1.75" H x 1.125" Diamenter

Female corn beings represent all that is good about being a woman: loving, generous, nurturing, kind, strong with great compassion.  In tribes that traditionally grow corn, most of the stories are the similar.  There are many Indigenous stories about how corn was brought to the people at a time when there was hunger, and how a sacred, sometimes other worldly, female being brought them corn.  In Zuni Pueblo, there are three ages of female corn beings: the maiden who wears her hair in the traditional buns on each side, the mother who has one or more babies, and the elder grandmother who wears her shawl over her head. There are dances to honor the female corn beings in many of the Pueblos.  And in other tribes, she is held in a place of great honor.

Traditionally, Zuni carvings are symbolically fed cornmeal.   Each Zuni fetish comes in a box with a descriptive card and a tiny bit of corn meal to tide them over until they reach you.