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PROVENANCE:    Robert E. Haynes
                                            Elliott D. Long
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"Round iron plate with slightly rounded rim with many iron bones of both the round and linier type. The unusual sukashi design consists of double myoga, with fine line carving on the buds on both sides of the plate, with a swallow attached to each, and an upside down shichi-go kiri mon and a go-san kiri mon on its side. The meaning of this design is unknown, except to say that they are mon treated in a most informal manner. This work seems to be of the Ko-Shoami school of the late Muromachi to Momoyama period. Such excentric work is to be found in the Muromachi period before the conformity of the Edo period had taken shape. A very rare and most interesting work." (Haynes)

7.1cm x 7.3cm x 0.6cm
"The KIRI mon is one of the two imperial crests (the other being the KIKU ("chrysanthemum"). This design was given to the Shogun and Toyotomi Hideyoshi from the Emperor. In Edo period, common people used it to take after Toyotomi Hideyoshi's good luck, because Toyotomi Hideyoshi had succeeded to super ruler of Japan from being a poor peasant.

The KIRI is represented either with five and seven blossoms (go-shichi no kiri), which is the imperial form, or with five and three blossoms (go-san no kiri), generally the form used by other families of Japan." (Long)
"MYOGA or Myoga Ginger. A herbaceous, deciduous, perennial native to Japan that is grown for its edible flower buds and flavorful shoots.

Cultural ref. There is an old saying in Japan that 'eating too much Myoga makes you forgetful or stupid'.

From 'Folktales from the Japanese Countryside', "Oh, well even simple Chu-ri-pan-taka went to heaven. If we eat this, we may go to heaven too." So people started to eat the crisp buds of this plant. They were very tasty, like ginger with a touch of garlic. They called it 'Myoga', which means, "Plant from a man carrying his name." (Long)

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