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What is sun face artwork?

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Quick Answer

Sun-face artwork features a circular image of the sun designed to resemble a human face with rays of light extending out from it. Sun-face artwork is seen throughout history, and many cultures used it to express deference to or worship of the sun.

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Full Answer

The Zuni people used the sun-face symbol in their pottery, rugs and jewelry. They valued the sun due to its importance in growing crops and believed it was good luck. Zuni tribes used the sun face to represent the Sun Father, an important deity in their culture. These Native Americans worshipped the sun often, and sun- face art was part of how they showed their respect. Other Native American tribes used sun-face art, including the Hopi Indians and the Rio Grande Pueblo tribes.

Sun-face symbols are also used in heraldry. "Sun in splendor" and "in his glory" are two common names for this type of sun-face art. Edward II of England used the sun face as a badge. Edward IV chose the sun face as a heraldic charge after witnessing a parhelion before the Battle of Mortimer's Cross in 1461.

Ancient civilizations, including Babylon, Greece, Rome and Egypt, used the sun face in their art. A medieval version of the sun face exists as well.The national flags of Argentina and Uruguay display a sun face, and versions of sun faces are on the arms and bearings of countries worldwide.

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