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Suit of armor
Place of Origin: Japan
Historical Period: Edo period (1615-1868)
Materials: Lacquered iron plates, leather, textile and cord
Dimensions: H. 55 in x W. 21 in x D. 11 3/4 in, H. 139.7 cm x W. 53.3 cm x D. 29.8 cm (suit)
Credit Line: Transfer from the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Gift of Mr. R. P. Schwerin
Department: Japanese Art
Collection: Arms And Armament
Object Number: B74M7.a-.e
On Display: No

Description

Label:

This suit of armor is of the so-called modern type (tosei gusoku). It came into vogue in the late sixteenth century, replacing an earlier, elaborate, and far more cumbersome style. A full set of tosei armor consists of a body protector, a helmet, and an iron mask. The body protector encompasses a breastplate, a skirt, shoulder guards, arm covers, thigh armor, and shin guards. To allow those parts covering the body to flex with the wearer's movement, many portions were made of thin strips of lacquered iron joined to one another with braided silk lacing. The cords' colors and their lacing and knotting style give the suit a distinctive character.

The armor protecting the torso is made of two large, leather-lined iron plates (front and back). Painted in lacquer on the front plate is the Buddhist guardian deity Achala Vidyaraja (Japanese: Fudo Myoo) running over rolling waves. This image suggests that Achala Vidyaraja is charging to protect the wearer. The side flaps of the helmet each bear a gilded family crest. The half-mask consists of a lacquered iron face plate and a throat guard.

To see a video about this deity and see a fire ritual dedicated to him, please visit http://bit.ly/1knYHry


Label:

This suit of armor is of the so-called modern type (tosei gusoku). It came into vogue in the late sixteenth century, replacing an earlier, elaborate, and far more cumbersome style. A full set of tosei armor consists of a body protector, a helmet, and an iron mask. The body protector encompasses a breastplate, a skirt, shoulder guards, arm covers, thigh armor, and shin guards. To allow those parts covering the body to flex with the wearer's movement, many portions were made of thin strips of lacquered iron joined to one another with braided silk lacing. The cords' colors and their lacing and knotting style give the suit a distinctive character.

The armor protecting the torso is made of two large, leather-lined iron plates (front and back). Painted in lacquer on the front plate is the Buddhist guardian deity Achala Vidyaraja (Japanese: Fudo Myoo) running over rolling waves. This image suggests that Achala Vidyaraja is charging to protect the wearer. The side flaps of the helmet each bear a gilded family crest. The half-mask consists of a lacquered iron face plate and a throat guard.

To see a video about this deity and see a fire ritual dedicated to him, please visit http://bit.ly/1knYHry