Description The Chinese zodiac, which is also used in Japan, assigns an animal to each year. There are twelve animals in total, six of which are depicted on this tsuba. The other six animals were probably used to decorate other sword fittings used with the tsuba. Each animal is placed within its own cartouche. On the front of the tsuba are a rat, a goat, a tiger, and a horse. On there reverse are a snake and an ox.
Provenance Henry Walters, Baltimore [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Inscriptions [Signature] 江川俊生; [Translation] Egawa Toshio
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters
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