This is a Japanese Porcelain Saki Jug. Dated Meiji period 1868 1912. Blue Kanji on white Porcelain with a raised rope design. In Meiji Era Japan, fine sake was transported from producers to shops in ceramic casks.
The front characters on the jar supposedly give the trade name of the sake; the characters on the back give information about the sake and its maker. There appears to be a chop or signature of the cask maker on the bottom of the jug. In the Kanto Plains Region. It has wonderful details in relief, the rope design throughout that mimics the ceremonial cask and the Kagamibiraki.
There is an emphasis on the spigot area where the sake was directly dispensed. The Saki cask originally had a cork ontop to secure the saki in the cask. This Meiji period jug has its handle and it is made of metal wrapped with rope at the handhold. Please see all the photos of this unique item, havent attempted to clean this jar, just have used water and sponge to remove dust over the years. This cask is in excellent condition.
Dimensions: height 14" , diameter 12". Kagamibiraki (The cask breaking ceremony). To be of divine origins, sake emerged as the drink of Japanese nobility over 2,000 years ago and grew to enjoy widespread popularity among all Japanese. Sake was especially popular on festive occasions.
To celebrate important events such as the New Year, weddings, anniversaries or the opening of a new business, a special ritual, the KAGAMIBIRAKI (cask breaking ceremony) was performed. KAGAMI refers to the circular mirror that was unveiled by a Shinto priest during the ceremony as a symbol of the divine spirit.
It also refers to the circular lid of the sake cask that is broken open by the guest of honor using a large wooden mallet. The sake is then ladled out to all in attendance. This ceremonial opening of the sake cask is believed to bring blessings of health, happiness and prosperity to all, as the sake is raised in a resounding toast of'KAMPAI!!
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In the event I make an error, I will always do my best to remedy the situation. Please feel free to contact me with any questions. Please read the item description and submit questions.The item "HUGE MEIJI PERIOD Japanese Porcelain SAKE Cask 1868-191" is in sale since Friday, August 29, 2008. This item is in the category "Antiques\Asian Antiques\Japan\Other Japanese Antiques". The seller is "toronita1" and is located in Port Orange, Florida. This item can be shipped worldwide.