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Japanese Boxes, We Like?

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Always nce to have cryptic messages on things. In this 'case', the dates do not seem to match, but it's the contents that matter!

 

What is written on the fantastic Noshi Maedate, John?

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Piers,

 

Here's what's written on the back. It's strange because the perfect, mirror-like finish on the back makes it seem like the maedate is modern, but the excellent patina and detail evident on the front is definitely Edo. Another thing - the maedate is larger and heavier than most such maedate which are usually made of a very light, balsa-type wood. I wonder if this was once some kind of plaque in a Buddhist shrine. Anyone have any ideas?

 

6C7oGd.jpg

 

bB26ET.jpg

 

John

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Catching up a bit this morning with coffee and saw this thread, nice stuff.  I enjoy and appreciate lacquer work, but have very little of it and what I have are small pieces.  I prefer the tansu and/or wooden boxes, especially those adorned with metal banding and latches.  Here are a couple of mine:

 

Katana dansu:

post-10-0-53462500-1504452772_thumb.jpg

 

Tansu:

post-10-0-03151800-1504452825_thumb.jpg

 

Tansu:

post-10-0-75177800-1504452870_thumb.jpg

 

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I think I want to live in Ed's house.

I'm ready to give up "Beach Paradise" minimalist living, and have tansu envy.

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Curran,

 

Your envy makes me think of one of Westside Story songs and I shall say : and what to keep in.

 

In the song the girl wants a washing machine and the girls chorus answers : and what do you have to keep clean :)

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Mmmm.... very satisfying. No expert on furniture here, but somehow I associate those with northern Honshu. (The lightness of the wood, the blackness, style and thickness of the fixtures.)

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Are there offering boxes in this format?  Could it possibly have been repurposed.  Seems to me it would house something long.  There are no signs that it had extensive bracing, but there does look to be signs of old glue on the inner bottom along one side and on that side is slight oxidation showing a curve similar to a katana or teppo hilt.  

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Ken, just used it subconsciously!

I guess with a single (long) box being a Hako, and a chest with drawers being a Tansu, if yours has drawers then it’s a katana-dansu.

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I'd always thought that bako were smaller boxes, & hako larger ones.

 

Ken, it's is called rendaku 連濁, sequal voicing. The "ha" of hako 箱 (box) changes into a "ba" if it's the non-initial portion of a compound. For example, it's hakogaki, but tsubabako.

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Thanks, Guido. If I can't get it right in transliterated English, I guess it wouldn't make sense to try it in Japanese! But I'll keep trying....

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Thought I'd revive this thread by sharing this negoro karabitsu from the Edo period:

 

gEVF36.jpg

 

On a related note, does anyone know if there are any books published on antique Japanese boxes?

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John, good question. How do you know that your karabitsu is from the Edo Period? Could it not be earlier? (See post #33 earlier)

 

Thanks for reviving this thread. This could be an excuse to get the camera out again. (Missing Eric now, though...)

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John, good question. How do you know that your karabitsu is from the Edo Period? Could it not be earlier? (See post #33 earlier)

 

Thanks for reviving this thread. This could be an excuse to get the camera out again. (Missing Eric now, though...)

Hi Piers,

 

When I first bought this karabitsu, I thought it could have been pre-Edo, but I have shown pictures of it to a few of our senior society members in Japan and they all seem to think that it's Edo.

 

Eric is indeed missed...

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