Bronze incense burner

From Japan
Edo period, AD 1673

Incense burners were often decorated with sculptures of birds or animals. The shishi (leonine beast) on this burner is emblematic guardian of both Buddhist and Shintō temples. Here it is positioned to appear in the midst of the incense smoke rising from the four holes in the lid. The holes are heart-shaped stylized 'boar's eyes'.

Such incense burners were made for use both in temples and private homes. The lengthy chiselled inscription, which includes the exact date and the name of the donor, Asano Kai Tadazune, indicates that the piece was a votive offering, presumably to a temple. The maker is Asana Kai Tadamasa of Kai, present-day Yamanashi Prefecture.

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Height: 25.800 cm
Length: 29.000 cm
Width: 16.600 cm

Museum number

Asia JA 1993.6-22.1



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