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19th C. Meiji Period Japanese Bronze Yatate Inkwell with Crab, Figural

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We are offering a wonderful bronze brush holder/inkwell known as a Yatate, 
dated circa 1860's - 1880's.This beautiful Meiji period piece stands out 
for it's unique figural design of the crab that adorns the hinged lid of the inkwell. 
It has really nice patina, and would be a great addition to anyone collection of 
Japanese antiquities. 

Yatate literally means "quiver". The name comes from the practice of early bushi who 
kept ink stones inside their quivers. Japanese writing was traditionally done using the 
writing set inspired from China: an inking stone, a small stick of solid ink (sumi) and brushes. 
The complete set was easily portable and took time to prepare the materials for writing.
The first yatate were long boxes, with the ink compartment in the axis of the pen. 
The round pot shape was designed to hold the sumi ink and made to be portable for travelling. 

Very good original condition. never polished. natural patina.

Approx. Dimensions: 
Length:   8  1/4"
Height:   1  3/4"
Width:    1  5/8"

Loc.  D    ID. 25