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Early or Late Okegawa Dou ?

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  • Early or Late Okegawa Dou ?

    Hi Everyone !

    This byo toji yokohagi okegawa go mai dou has a richly made mune ita and boko no ita decorated with imprinted leather and brass lining. There is a
    saihan no kan wich implies it belonged to an officer and hopefully a gentleman. The sugake odoshi and the leather on the bottom lames are rotted and flaking.
    The kebiki odoshi and the leather lining are in surprisingly good condition. I can't help but wonder if this ballistic vest was made and worn during the Sengoku
    Jidai and saw some real battle ! Or was it made much later during the Bakumatsu ?Are there any details on this armour that the poor imagery gives away as to
    pinpoint the date ? We can probably discard the nevertheless beautiful engravings of Fudo Myo and companions as "commercial art "added at a later date .
    Or was it common practice of officers during the Sengoku Jidai to adorn their dou's with deity's ? Anyway , liked to share this piece and learn something at the same time.
    Any input welcomed !

    Jon

  • #2
    Jon, A very nice do that would respond well to a little TLC. These things are very difficult to date as the plates were often re-used and modified over the years. The depiction of Fudo Myo-o and the two rings on the front, point to it being Edo period and probably late. I note that the hinges are riveted in place, rather than being laced with rawhide thongs under braid as was more common. That may well point to it having had an earlier life.
    Ian Bottomley
    Ian Bottomley - UK

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Ian,

      are you sure the hinges are riveted? They seem to be laced for my old eyes...?!
      Mit to late Edo, from the overall impression.
      Uwe Sacklowski / Germany

      Comment


      • #4
        Good afternoon Gentlemen,

        I magnified the images, and I think the hinges are riveted.

        Perhaps we could have some close ups please Jon?

        It's a nice set, worthy of some TLC
        Pip Pip Cheerio

        Malcolm

        Comment


        • #5
          Hii all,
          ​​​​​ Interesting do it's always nice to watch the gold and silver applied...
          the famous triad, : " the Fudo sanzon"
          Fudo myo-o with 2 attendants : Seitaka Doji and Kongara doji
          Fudo myo-o :immovable wisdom king
          ..Seitaka Doji symbolize the expedient action
          .Kongara Doji personify the obedience

          This triad is sometimes depicting (not only) on do armor John.. No doubt is was not for a samurai of low rank because of the price of the command. (Long time and difficulties to make it was expensive! ) so it was certainly worn by a high rank samurai..
          The leather printed seems not so old but difficult to be sure with photos. Midle / end edo. As said Ian maybe some changes in the edo period... A very nice and rare do!
          ​​​​​​.
          Laurent / France



          ​​​​​​
          ​​​​​​
          Last edited by gui; 10-08-2019, 06:56 PM.

          Comment


          • Jon
            Jon commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi Laurent , Interesting to know that the engraving of the holy trinity could have been commissioned by a samurai of rank. Thanks for naming the two companions.
            Maybe the leather was at one time replaced....

            Jon

        • #6
          Hello Gentlemen ,

          Thank you for your observations ! Sorry for the late reply . TLC is what we need ! Also beginning to appreciate the complexity of "putting a date on a dou ".
          The pic's show that the right side hinges are indeed riveted , opposed to the left side , wich are held together by a common steel wire and old odoshi.
          So Mr. B 's keen eye is spot on !
          Not familiar with the term 'rawhide thong "though ?

          Jon

          Comment


          • Malcolm
            Malcolm commented
            Editing a comment
            Thank You Jon

        • #7
          With the Jas we are preparing an article about the difference between momoyama and edo dou. Kanno san gave a lecture about this in New York. This dou here is certainly edo. But as Ian already stated, old parts could be used all the time.
          Luc Taelman -

          Comment


          • Jon
            Jon commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello Luc, Does mere registering on the JAS allow you to post a question but prohibits the reading of the articles?

          • Luc taelman
            Luc taelman commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi Jon, you are a Jas member, not? You have acces to all the japanese magazines, the JAS forum and translations content. But this article is in progress, I can not publish it yet. In fact, there are 2 Japanese experts seperately working on an article about this subject at the same time. For me, it was a surprise on many points to discover the differences.

          • Jon
            Jon commented
            Editing a comment
            No , only registered myself ,It would be an interesting article to read I'm sure !

        • #8
          A good new early morning Luc 🙂
          ​​​​​​.
          Laurent

          Comment


          • #9
            Like within most areas of Japanese arms and armours, I think the tradition of recycling was quite common practice. And the reason for this is quite simple; during the 18th and beginning the 19th century, a majority of the samurai, from Daimyo down to the ashigaru was more or less poor due to bad financial times, so of course material was reused as much as possible. We see it in matchlocks and we see it on armours. The good thing with armours is that most of this could be hidden under generous amount of urushi, making detection very difficult.

            Jan
            Jan - Sweden

            Comment


            • #10
              Yes , that makes sense . So it was repatch , refurbish , mix and match....And the only way to know what's hiding under the urushi is by x-ray or disassembly.

              Jon

              Comment


              • #11
                Jon, Yes, that is the situation. It was also true earlier. Today, iron and steel are common and cheap, but in the past were difficult to make and expensive. The Royal Armouries Museum has a mogami haramaki armour given to King Philip II of Spain in 1585 where almost every plate is made by riveting together pieces. Even the mask has the plate over the left cheek riveted to the rest. The only part that is made from single pieces is the zunari kabuto.
                Ian Bottomley
                Ian Bottomley - UK

                Comment


                • #12
                  Great stuff Ian ! I gather the Royal Armouries made it standard practice to x-ray their armours as to find clue's of maker and technique. You must have encountered some oddities !

                  Jon

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Hi Jon,
                    I agree with your idea of xRay tests this is the solution! but the cost, materials..
                    The tests ian made with the Royal Armories are very interesting.. I would be really interested to know what percent of metal iron, steel, copper etc.. is in each kabuto.. .To make comparison with different schools, smith's and periods.
                    Curiosity yes but not only 🙂
                    ​​​​​​.
                    Laurent / France

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Hi Laurent ,

                      Yes , playing "Grey's Anatomy "with armour would be a lot of fun ! But I guess only institutions like the Armouries could manage such an undertaking. Don't know
                      if other Musea and or collectors made use of x-ray to examine what is underneath the surface of their armour .

                      Jon

                      Comment


                      • gui
                        gui commented
                        Editing a comment
                        I Don t know maybe Museums did sometimes but it may be not published/ open to public.
                        .
                        Laurent / France
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