Lute (shamisen) and plectrum

before 1820


Object Place: Japan

Dimensions

Length 96 cm, width 19.4 cm, depth 8.8 cm (Length 37 13/16 in., width 7 5/8 in., depth 3 7/16 in.)

Accession Number

1992.62a-b

Medium or Technique

Persimmon wood, shitan wood, cat skin, ivory

On View

Musical Instrument Gallery (Gallery 103D)

Collections

Musical Instruments

Classifications

Chordophones

Lacquerd hardwood body; neck and pegboard carved from one solid piece. Sides of body, base of neck, and back of pegboard decorated with various outdoor scences. At bottom of the body is metal plate in figure of boat, around which woven silk tailpiece is hooked. Belly and back of catskin. Includes tortoiseshell plectrum, cloth cover, and original hardwood case with various inscriptions.

Inscription

The case has various inscriptions

Provenance

By May 1820, Matsudaira, Lord of Shinano Province, present-day Nagano Prefecture, Japan. By 1992, sold by Hinata Antiques, Tokyo, Japan, to Tony Bingham, London, England; 1992, sold by Bingham to the MFA. (Accession Date: March 25, 1992)

Credit Line

Frederick Brown Fund and William Lindsey Fund, by exchange