Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

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Manjū netsuke depicting Taira no Koremochi with a witch

  • Description

    The warrior Taira no Koremochi shared a picnic with a princess on Mount Togakushi and fell asleep. On waking, he was confronted by the princess transformed into a witch. He quickly dispatched her with a sword given to him by the god Hachiman.

  • Details

    Associated place
    Asia Japan (place of creation)
    AsiaJapanHonshūKantōTōkyō prefecture Tōkyō (probable place of creation)
    AsiaJapanHonshūOsaka prefecture Osaka (possible place of creation)
    1860 - 1890
    Ichiyūsai Naoharu (active c. 1860 - c. 1890)
    Associated people
    Taira no Koremochi (active 10th century AD) (subject)
    Material and technique
    ivory, probably lathe-turned, with carved decoration, and stained with red and black pigment
    2.3 cm (height)
    5.6 cm (diameter)
    Material index
    Technique index
    formed carved,
    Object type index
    No. of items
    Credit line
    Bequeathed by Dr Monica Barnett, 2001.
    Accession no.
  • Further reading

    Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 23 April-22 September 2013, Manjū: Netsuke from the Collection of the Ashmolean Museum, Joyce Seaman, ed. (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2013), no. 72 on p. 178, illus. pp. 179, 180, & 181

Glossary (2)

Manjū, netsuke

  • Manjū

    The manjū is a type of netsuke or toggle which takes its name from a round, sweet, bean paste-filled bun. A greater dynamism can often be achieved on the front and back of the netsuke than with other three-dimensional carving.

  • netsuke

    The netsuke is a form of toggle that was used to secure personal items suspended on cords from the kimono sash. These items included purses, medicine cases or tobacco paraphernalia.


    • currently in research collection

Objects are sometimes moved to a different location. Our object location data is usually updated on a monthly basis. Contact the Jameel Study Centre if you are planning to visit the museum to see a particular object on display, or would like to arrange an appointment to see an object in our reserve collections.


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