Mayan jewelry is one of the most impressive throughout history. This civilization was established more than 4,500 years ago in Guatemala, to later reach Mexico, Belize, Honduras and Salvador, where they left the palpable legacy of their extraordinary jewelry, being an outstanding manifestation of that surprising people.

For the Mayans, jade was the most appreciated stone, having it as a sacred treasure, they attributed numerous magical powers to him, considering him as a gift from on high. It was a stone, which was always present in their rituals, representing dominion, life and fertility; the different colors of jade, were small parts of the natural world that they possessed, because it was directly related to the sun, the earth, vegetation and above all with water.

In addition, for the realization of Mayan jewelry, jade was the most resistant and durable material they found, appreciating it much more than gold, crafting incredible jewelry. They executed the goldsmith, in beautiful beads, earrings, bracelets, anklets, rings; also, magnificent pectorals that were used by the warriors who protected the sacred sites.

Also, the masks, were a jewelry with great representation; using them in ceremonies, preserving the face of the monarchs for eternity, being buried with them. However, it has been proven that the upper classes in the Mayan society habitually used this object.

Jade is a rare stone, found only in a few places in the world. There is a very fine jadeite, in various colors, that is currently being exploited in Guatemala, producing impressive jewelry in different styles; that recall those periods when the tireless Mayans had majestic jewels, devoting all their effort to make them.

The purest color of jade for the Mayans was white, due to its immense beauty and resistance; although the bright green shade was preferred. On the other hand, the impressive Mayan jewelry was characterized by multiple models, even designing very thin jade plates, applying them in the beautiful mosaics they made, especially in the masks; They also placed this gem under the tongue of the deceased to help them get to the other world safely.

In Mayan jewelry, apart from jade, other materials and precious stones were used such as turquoise, shells, macaw or quetzal feathers and some gold objects. But the most frequent pieces of jewelry were necklaces, made of shell and jade; many times they made combinations of various elements.

Raúl Ybarra, a specialist in pre-Hispanic techniques in jewelry casting, during a visit to the National Museum of Archeology and Ethnology, in Guatemala City, «was amazed observing the Mayan jewelry works, made of jade, shells, quartz and bone, and he expressed the skill of the Mayan lapidaries, admiring the greatness of that great culture.”

The impressive Mayan jewelry has survived the times, leaving its eternal mark. An extraordinary legacy that still surprises us today, with those wonderful creations, reflected in unique jewels.