This lacquerware bowl is highly unusual
because of its size, its elaborate decoration
and in that it commemorates a specific
historical event at a critical juncture in
YPM catalog no. ANT. 241835
With a lightning design in gold and silver, this lacquer food box, jikiro, was part of a wedding trousseau made early in the 17th century. After 150 years of civil war among the feudal nobles (daiymo) of various clans who ruled lands throughout the islands of Japan, Tokugawa Ieyasu (1542–1616) established his family’s control over all of Japan. Thereafter, permission of the Tokugawa was required for any marriage of a daiymo or any of his family members. This jikiro commemorates an important marriage between a daughter of the Tokugawa and a member of the Mori clan.