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I share with you an  interesting historical  armor from my collection, this object belonged to HORI HIDEMASA a Daimyo of the momoyama era.


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This armor is from the early Momoyama period (around 1575), probably donated by Nobunaga. Indeed on the "Kote" is found the Mon of Oda and an impressive Kashiradate in the shape of a nail which is a reminder of the Mon of HORI (Mon in the shape of a nail puller): The armor dates from the period when Hidemasa was in campaign in the service of ODA Nobunaga between 1572 and 1582.


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Mon from HORI clan image.jpeg.d7a317b5137ce8bcb3c53c4a87765620.jpeg


In 1566 at the age of 13 he entered as a page in the service of Oda Nobunaga, in 1572 he was present during the campaign against the Azai and the Asakura (The Chronicle of Lord Nobunaga / by Ota Gyuichi; translated and edited by JSA Elisonas and JP Lamers). In 1575, he took part in Nobunaga's assaults against the Ikkō-ikki of Echizen province and fought the saika-ikki two years later, commanding Nobunaga's army in the company of Hashiba Hideyoshi and Sakuma Nobumori. He is also at the head of a corps of arquebusiers in several battles including that of Komaki and Nagakute which opposed him to TOKUGAWA IYEASU. On the death of Nobunaga he became one of the closest Daimyo to HIDEYOSHI until his death in 1590 at the siege of ODAWARA Castle, he participated in many campaigns with this armor.


Détails from front and behind the Do  image.jpeg.3a2c8e65da97fb9ef4c04f21c6a6e0cf.jpeg


This armor comes from the collections of the LII ARMOR Museum in Kyoto and exhibited at the LIDA City Museum during a retrospective on the HORI family :


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The original bitsu image.jpeg.4ffb20bbb2df6bbc293d7d7872e6cd84.jpeg

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Dear Alain.


How wonderful to have an attributable armour like this, thank you for sharing it.  Interesting to see a very functional Etchu zunari, the lack of sode and the very large pierced plate at the shoulders of the kote.


All the best.

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Thanks Geraint, the owner of this armor commanded a corps of arquebusiers, most of the time he had to fight on foot. It is very possible that this armor did not have sode and that suneate and menpo were not worn on the battlefield.
Mobility was essential as well as the need to be easily visible to his troops (the very large nail-shaped kashiradate) and the ability to give orders in the noise and smoke of firearms.

obviously this is only an opinion.

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  • 2 weeks later...


I am aware that it has been exhibited with the attribution, but I was wondering if there was any further provenance, was it donated to a temple, does it come from a family collection, are there clues in the Bitsu? I am just trying to gauge where the attribution comes from.


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Sorry for my late response.
Indeed there is an old attribution on the bitsu (but which I cannot translate) if you can help me.
Also attached is the text that accompanied the armor during the exhibition (I know how to translate)

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Hi Alain,

unfortunately I also can’t read all what’s written on the tag of the hitsu (only fragments). Maybe you can post it in the translation section, so that our native speakers can throw an eye on it?!

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Translation of the printed text: 

This is a head-shaped helmet with a dark blue thread dignity and a large nail headstall. This helmet has a large nailhead stand, which is one of the designs seen in the kobo of the Sengoku-Momoyama period, but most of them are made of wood. The breast plate of the body is decorated with a dragon in gold lacquer. As the headstand is eye-catching, the body is only decorated with gold maki-e on the breastplate, so that the overall impression is well balanced. Hori Hidemasa was a close associate of Nobunaga, and later served under Hideyoshi, and was loved for his talent, but died at a young age during the Odawara War. He was known for his skill in battle and was called "Kyutaro the master". 

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