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Updated: 19 Apr 2024


Japanese lacquer box set
Makie Fubako (Fubako-02)


Delivery Time: Approx. 5-14 DAYS

Signature: NO SIGNED
Material: wood, lacquer

Vertical Width Height Weight
15.0 cm 30.0 cm 15.3 cm 1,366 g

You can enlarge all the photos to see the detail of the item.


SKU: Fubako-02 Categories: ,

 A Fubako (文箱/文筥) is a kind of box. It has been used to store letters, papers, or books, and it is also used to deliver documents to the other party. While we judged this box as a Fubako, it is also possible that its former owners used it to store other items, such as stationery or jewelry. This item is a set of outer and inner boxes. Both boxes are decorated with gorgeous black lacquer decorations using the Makie (蒔絵) technique. The Makie is a typical Japanese lacquer art technique developed uniquely in Japan for about 1,200 years. Firstly, it needs to draw a picture with lacquer on the surface with a thin brush. Next, sprinkle the gold powder from above to show the pattern before the lacquer hardens. This technique makes a gorgeous and elegant look to works, as seen in this lacquer box.

 You would find the same family crests are designed on both boxes. This crest is called the Aoi-Domoe / Mitsuba-Aoi-no Mon (葵巴/三つ葉葵の紋 ). It is a plant pattern in which each stem branches and has characteristic heart-shaped leaves. Today, it is known as the family crest of the Tokugawa Shogunate family led by Tokugawa Ieyasu (徳川 家康, 1543-1616), a famous military commander of the Warring States period. This plant pattern has also been used for the crest of the Kamo shrine in Kyoto prefecture. As mentioned above, the famous Shogunate family, the Tokugawa family, had their family crest with three leaves of Aoi due to their relationship with the Kamo shrine. As its leaves have a habit of always facing the sun, and the word “Aoi” is taken as “Aogu (仰ぐ, looking up)” for the sun, people thought the Aoi pattern would bring good fortune.

 On the outer box, this family crest is combined with two other plant patterns: Karakusa (唐草, arabesque) and Matsuba (松葉, pine needle). The Karakusa pattern is a design in which vine stems and leaves are twined and make curves. Since ivy has a strong vitality and grows up without interruption, people regarded this design as a symbol of prosperity and longevity.

 The Matsuba pattern is designed on this Fuchi Kashira. Golden paint (probably brass) is applied to these pine needles, making an elegant color contrast of black and gold. There are also pine tree patterns, and both have been treated as auspicious motifs. Many Japanese people have admired the pine needle pattern because the roots of the two leaves are firmly connected and would not separate even if the leaves fall. Shoguns and Daimyos set their own patterns in the Edo period and called it the Sadame Mon (定め紋). Tokugawa Tsunayoshi (徳川 綱吉, 1680-1709), the 5th Shogun of the Edo Shogunate, used the Matsuba design for his Sadame Mon.

 This way, auspicious motifs, and a famous family crest decorate this lacquer box set. We hope you enjoyed this description and add this item to your great collection.

 *As this item is an antique, please check each photo and ensure its condition.

【About us】
 Samurai Museum is located in Tokyo, Japan, exhibiting antique artifacts related to the Samurai history. Samurai Museum Shop is the place for those who are interested in Japanese culture and craftsmanship. We deal with antique Samurai swords/armor, traditional crafts made in Japan and so on.

【Payment method】
 We accept payment through Stripe (Credit card), PayPal, Apple Pay or ChromePay, all of which are secure payment methods. Also, you don’t need to make an account on Stripe for the checkout. If you prefer other payment method, please contact us. You may either pay in JPY, USD, AUD, CAD, EUR, CHF or GBP. The price is set in Japanese Yen. Prices in other currencies are automatically calculated based on the latest exchange rate. 

【Shipping duration】
 We normally ship via EMS (Express Mail Service) provided by Japan Post. It usually takes at least 5-14 days to deliver the package after you place an order. Time of delivery is estimated as accurately as possible by the carrier but does not take into account any delays beyond our control such as by inclement weather, post office holiday seasons.

 We offer Free International Shipping as long as we can ship your order by EMS. If you prefer other shipping carriers, please contact us.
 We will inform you of the order’s tracking number via email. Please make sure you fill out your valid email address correctly.

*Please keep in mind that due to the spread of COVID-19, there might be possible delays in delivery. If you like to make sure if EMS shipping is available to your country, please contact us.

【How to make sure the condition】
 Please keep in mind that what you are going to purchase is an antique item. We uploaded high resolution photos for you to check its condition thoroughly. If you like to see more photos with different angles, please feel free to contact us. We will be happy to send them to you so that you can make informed decision. 

 It is essential for us to know that you are happy with your choice of Fubako and we are prepared to use the best of our ability to serve you.


 Would you like see some more antique items for sale? Please check the link below. We hope you can find your favorite item.


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