Decorative bronze vase
Meiji era, dated in accordance with AD 1869
This vase is signed by the maker Hata Zōroku (Zōroku, the lay Buddhist, 1823-90). He specialized in archaistic versions of high quality Chinese bronzes for secular display. Among his well-known pieces is the great bronze seal of the Meiji Emperor, who ascended the throne in 1868.
His bronzes are made using the lost wax technique, introduced into Japan from Korea in the sixth century, which he had studied in his youth under Ryūbondo Yasuke, one of a Kyoto family of bronze-makers well known for the manufacture of kettle lids.