TITLE: Goliath Mask
TYPE: face mask
GENERAL REGION: Latin America
SUBREGION: Cunduacán, Tabasco
DESCRIPTION: Goliat (Goliath) Mask
CATALOG #: LAMX133
MAKER: Unknown maker in Cúlico
CEREMONY: Danza del David y Goliat
MAIN MATERIAL: cedar wood
OTHER MATERIALS: jolocin tree bark strips; cotton string; oil-based paint
The Dance of David and Goliath was taught to the Nahuatl people of Cunduacán by Spanish missionaries as part of their proselytization efforts, and it has been danced there probably since the sixteenth century. It tells the Biblical story of David’s victory of Goliath with the help of Archangel Michael. It is danced on December 7 and 8 in honor of the Celebración de la Virgen de la Concepción. Other masked characters include Goliath, Capitán Luzbel, a dragon, two black clowns, and three soldiers. David, represented by a child, wears no mask.
The first act presents all of the characters on a platform in front of the church. In the second, David slays the dragon with the help of the blacks, and in the third, David slays Goliath. The characters make speeches before the combat, and the entire play is accompanied by live music.