samurai tsuba

Hanbo Muromachi
Late Muromachi Period (1336-1573)16th centuryA rare samurai mask of hanbo shape, covering half face and excluding the nose.The narrow size of the nose aperture immediately suggests a very old date, confirmed also by the iron and laquer consumption, which help to date the item to the 16th century.The general shape of the mask, together strong but delicate, is very similar to a model drawn in the Meiko-zukan-zokushu signed by Yoshimichi and to the hanbo signed Takayoshi in the Orikasa collection: the curled lip and the well balanced lines follow the same design,...

Mid Edo Period  (1615-1868) 18th Centuryron with openwork decoration (sukashi)96 mm, maru-gata with beveled raised rim (takadotemimi)Thickness at the seppadai: 3 mm. Thickness at the rim: 6 mmA karabana flower on one side and a kikyo over a  sakura on the other create a well-balanced composition. The delicate subject, careful finish and refined iron indicate a tsuba of high quality.Karabana design had been imported from China and do not resemble any real Japanese flower; this indicates that the decoration is actually referring to family crests and not to natural...

Iron war fan decorated with a rising sunEarly Edo period, 17th centuryLenght: 49 cmSignature: Iga no kami Minamoto Kanemichi伊賀守源包道 The gunbai uchiwa was a type of fixed fan used by generals and daimyō to signal orders during battles. It was frequently decorated with a large red sun in the center, in this case painted in red lacquer on a gold background, but some were also adorned with moon or planets designs as well as with kanji or bonji characters. During the Edo period, the gunbai came to be viewed as a symbol of power and status, as only high- ranking samurai would carry...

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