$3.99 thrift store find turns out to be nearly 2,000-year-old Mayan vase

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June 18 (UPI) -- A vase purchased for $3.99 at a Maryland thrift store turned out to be a nearly 2,000-year-old Mayan artifact.

Anna Lee Dozier of Washington, said she was shopping at the 2A Thrift Store in Clinton when her attention was grabbed by an unusual vase.


"It looked old-ish, but I thought maybe 20, 30 years old and some kind of tourist reproduction thing so I brought it home," Dozier told WUSA-TV.

Dozier said she was visiting Mexico on a work trip earlier this year when she noticed some items on display at the Museum of Anthropology bore a startling resemblance to the vase she purchased for $3.99.

She spoke with a museum official, who recommended she contact the Mexican embassy when she returned home.

Dozier shared photos and the dimensions of the vase with the embassy, and the item was identified as a Mayan artifact dating from A.D. 200-800.

Dozier and her family returned the vase to Mexican Ambassador Estaban Moctezuma Barragan in a ceremony held at the Cultural Institute of Mexico.

"I am thrilled to have played a part in it's repatriation story. I would like it to go back to its rightful place and to where it belongs," she said, "But I also want it out of my home because I have three little boys and I have been petrified, well it's gone now, but I was petrified that after two-thousand years I would be the one to wreck it!"


Officials said the vase will eventually have a new home at a Mexican museum.

Another thrift store vase, purchased for $3.99 from a Goodwill store in Virginia, was auctioned last year for over $107,000 when it was found to be designed by Carlo Scarpa for famed Italian company Venini in 1942.

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