A Japanese lacquer wine ewer, late 17th Century.

This wine, or sake, ewer would have been designed for domestic use, probably as a high quality piece for a merchant, rather than for a member of the warrior class.

Pine trees and mandarin orange trees on a riverbank decorate the lid and encircle the body, extending over the spout, using gold, silver, and aokin flat makie and thinly raised makie with cut gold-foil and painted lines.

Gold flat makie arabesques decorate the length of the handle.

Inside the lid are two inscriptions, reading ‘to-i-tsu’ and ‘hyakuhachi/ ka-se-me-ru-ge.’ ‘Kasemeruge’ may have referred to a person’s name, height 16.3cm, width, including spout 21.4cm.

The 1835 Burghley Inventory records: ‘Japan Closet, Japan in the Glass case opposite the door(s), sic, B & G A Kettle.’

The 1867 Burghley Inventory records: ‘Cabinets, No 88 Japan Closet, A black and gold japan kettle.’


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