Art Spotted: Ancient Mayan Dental Decoration
Text by Rachael C. Bible
Today's Art Spotted comes from the Late Classic Mayan Period (from 700 to 900 CE/AD). Intentional dental modification in the Mayan culture dates back to at least 2,500 years ago. Jeweled inlays on the outer side of the teeth (the labial surface) required extremely skilled dentists as it would be easy to injure the pulp cavity.