Japanese Good Luck Signed Flag, 1000 Stitch Belt, and Off-To-War Banner from Same Soldier
This is your opportunity to purchase a Japanese Good Luck Signed Flag, 1000 Stitch Belt and Off-To-War Banner belonging to the same soldier. The grouping was sourced from an estate sale in Japan.
The good luck flag is made from silk and measures approximately 28.” high X 41.” long. The deep red colored sun in the center was silk screened onto the white field that has now darkened with age. The fly and hoist side edges have added stitching for strength. The large, white corner tabs are firmly sewn into place. (These are similar to the examples shown in the book, Imperial Japanese Good Luck Flags and One-Thousand Stitch Belts, p.27). Each tab has a small brass grommet in its center; both of those contain their large white tie strings. The flag has a number of holes on it, as well as what appears to be blood stains from battle.
There are two characters found near the 12 o’clock position that have tears in them. They appear to be for the kanji characters Hissho or, “Certain Victory!” Near the 4-5 o’clock position is the character for “Power” or “Strength”, Riki or Chikara. The flag is dedicated on the right-hand side and says, “Presented to: Mr. Tsukamoto Ryouichi”. Many other signatures are present from well-wishers.
The cotton 1000 Stitch Belt is a classic example made from white cloth that is dark from age and wear. Red cotton thread was used to form flat stitches across the front of the senninbari. Each of the 1000 stitches was placed inside a small reddish-orange stamped circle in order to complete the belt. Overall, the senninbari measures approximately 6.” high X 46.” not including the tie strings.
There is quite a bit of writing on one end of the belt, although some of it is difficult to read because the material was folded over and sewn closed, when attaching the tie string. The good luck slogan Ki Buun Chokyu or “I Pray Your Military Fortunes Are Long Lasting” may be clearly seen inside the layers of material, along with the slogan Hissho or “Certain Victory!” In addition, a large 2.” X 2.” shrine seal was stamped on the inner flap. The characters for the seal read Wakayama Hachiman Jinja (shrine). There are a number of shrines with this name located across Japan. Should the new owner decide to separate the stitches, it might be possible to glean additional information and better pinpoint the shrine’s location. There does appear to be a few small stains from battle present.
The flag and senninbari are accompanied by the man’s Off-To-War Banner. The silk nobori is in wonderful condtion and measures approximately 17.5″ wide X 56.75″ long.
The upper aspect of the colorful art begins with a teal-blue zig-zag design. In its center is a stylized Japanese Army star in yellow-gold, surrounded by a red wreath. Immediately below that is a crossed Japanese rayed battle flag and Japanese national flag. The two are affixed to poles and lashed together by a teal-blue and gold cord or tassel. The upper border of the off-to-war banner is surrounded by a deep purple colored border. The lower border of the banner is surrouned by an orange striped border that goes down both sides and across the bottom. The lower art depicts peach colored cherry blossoms that stand out nicely against the black kanji characters. The banner was presented to Mr. Tsukamoto Ryouichi. The presenter was “Uchida Takeji of Tokyo”.
For someone looking for a complete off-to-war set (flag, 1000 stitch belt and off-to-war banner), this would make a terrific addition to your collection. There is also some research possibility as well.