Buddhist priest's robe (kesa)

Beniji Shokko moyo nishiki shichijo kesa

Meiji or Taisho era
late 19th to early 20th century

Object Place: Japan


Height x width: 137.9 x 222.5 cm (54 5/16 x 87 5/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Appliquéd silk, Lampas with plain-weave foundation and 1/3 twill supplementary weave; pieced and appliquéd

Not On View


Asia, Textiles and Fashion Arts



Seven-columned kesa with decoration of shokko patterns. Columns, dividing bands, border, shiten: red silk ground with figured patterns of interlocking geometric shapes (shokko). Chrysanthemums enclosed within square-shaped motifs are linked with four-petalled flowers. Chrysanthemum arabesques and reversed swastikas decorate the interstitial spaces. The pattern no longer exhibits the formal quality of the original Japanese design. Niten: none. Lining: silk plain-weave fabric of degummed red warps and degummed white wefts.


Gift of Dr. William Sturgis Bigelow to the MFA March 3, 1921.

Credit Line

William Sturgis Bigelow Collection