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Japanese Boxes, We Like?

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John, that changes my understanding of things then. Thanks.

Regarding the swiveling box (supporting the dragon's head) above, no one said what it was so I'll post something simple instead.

 

Just dusted this off....
銭箱 Zenibako perhaps.江戸時代に商家で使用した、銭を保管するための木箱。箱の上部に投入口があり、下部の取り出し口には錠をつけ、頑丈に作られている。(Used in merchant's premises, a wooden box to keep cash coins. With an insertion slot on the top, and a way to remove the contents below, usually fitted with a lock, they were sturdily built.)
 

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In for a penny, in for a pound. :thumbsup:

 

A box here, in the sense that it is hollow inside, so, an upside-down box? :)

 

These were probably Daimyō Dōgu, part of the 3-part amusement set that a newly-married lady might take to her new household. (盤) 双六、将棋、囲碁 (Ban)Sugoroku (backgammon), Shōgi and I-Go. Sugoroku had to be repeatedly banned in Heian times because it was so popular.

 

I managed over the years to find Edo Period dice, tumbler and pieces. The seven Kamon on the ends of the Dai/Ban are 'right' for Daimyō status, I heard, but have not verified. The zōgan inlay work on the playing surface looks more like bone than ivory, so I guess it is not absolutely top notch. The condition is not great either! :laughing:

Weighs 9.4 kg (No, it's not a car battery.)

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Very interesting boxes, Piers - thanks for sharing! I can see that you are also a box aficionado, as I have been for as long as I can remember. There's just something about a well-made box that I find fascinating. Given the ubiquity, variety and quality of boxes in Japanese culture - and the culture's predilection for making books about any subject imaginable - I would think that there must be books on this particular subject matter, which might contain information such as how to date such objects.

 

Can you explain your statement above - "...that changes my understanding of things then..." with regards to my karabitsu?

 

On another note, though a little off-topic, I thought I would share this interesting little video:

 

https://twitter.com/cctvidiots/status/1243391627525160960?s=20

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Just amazing! Thanks. Wow.

 

I had this theory that karabitsu were used when people did not move around so much. Armour was stored for many seasons unused. The legs held the bottom off the floor and helped move air around the box to prevent water/rot/ mold etc.

 

Then as battles became more frequent, and armies moved constantly, and Tōsei Gusoku armour came into fashion, boxes also needed to be light, slim and easy to carry. Legs added weight, and legged karabitsu could not be stacked.

 

Thus it was that I thought karabitsu went out of fashion long before Edo. Perhaps like Shinshinto though, they were indeed recreated, as a throwback to a golden age??? Or to house ever-popular recreations of Ō-yoroi???

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I had this theory that karabitsu were used when people did not move around so much. Armour was stored for many seasons unused. The legs held the bottom off the floor and helped move air around the box to prevent water/rot/ mold etc.

 

Then as battles became more frequent, and armies moved constantly, and Tōsei Gusoku armour came into fashion, boxes also needed to be light, slim and easy to carry. Legs added weight, and legged karabitsu could not be stacked.

 

Thus it was that I thought karabitsu went out of fashion long before Edo. Perhaps like Shinshinto though, they were indeed recreated, as a throwback to a golden age??? Or to house ever-popular recreations of Ō-yoroi???

I agree with your theory, Piers. I would also add that many karabitsu that one sees today that are very fancy, with makie, inlay, mon, etc., are from the Meiji period and made primarily for decorative purposes. I think that true armour karabitsu (such as those made for o-yoroi) were actually quite simple. The one from the Met is indeed a beautiful example, but I think it was not made for an armour because it's a little too small (it's only 13" tall and I think that's with the legs) for that purpose.

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Here's another interesting box - this time a kabuto bitsu, covered in leather:

 

kceyYd.jpg

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There are some bigger boxes around the house, but since life is in limbo and I have been polishing lacquer, may I just include a large shallow-sided ‘tray’ for placing kimono before and after a bath?

(Photos follow. I may have shown this many years ago on the old This Week's Edo Period thread.)

 

Scratched and battered, but the Mon may be 嵯峨桐紋 Saga Kiri Mon, connected to the Saga Imperial line in Kyoto.

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