Nonume grapevine Kozuka
Period: Late Edo period (1603-1867), 19th century
Materials: Iron, Gold
The ‘kozuka’ is the hilt of a small knife carried within the ‘koshirae’ (fittings) called ‘kogatana’ and is integrated in Japanese ‘nihonto’ culture, as both object of status and as utensil. The ‘kozuka’ is generally integrated within the ‘koshirae’ of the sword, being tucked in the scabbard and within a recess in the ‘tsuba’ (hand guard). The ‘kozuka’ is an implement which was added for functional use, sometimes next to a ‘kogai’ hairpin. During the rather stable Edo period, the decoration of the ‘kozuka’ and other sword fittings underwent a large extension and many hilts can be found in a wide variety of decorations and materials such as bronze, iron, gold and silver.
Decorated with fine gold inlay (nonume zogan) technique Shaped like a sword scabbard with a locket and ‘kojiri’ (chape). The mid section is decorated with a decor of grapevines and leafs. The vines show a similarity with the ‘Karakusa‘ (唐草) pattern. The back is decorated with a cloudy pattern in cross-hatched overlay silver.
Condition: Very good, some light ware due to its age.
Provenance: French art market
– The Metropolitan Museum of Art New York acc.nr.91.1.869
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