Shibuichi kozuka featuring design of rooster, chickens and war drum in low relief, with copper, gold and shakudo inlays. Mumei. Edo period. Attributed to Mito School.

The association of a rooster and a drum is based on old legend which has two possible versions. In the 7th century Emperor Kotoku placed a drum outside his palace so that the people could beat upon it if they had a grievance, or in the other version, to call warriors to action. In either version, the wise emperor reigned in peace for so long that the drum was never used. Eventually it became a resting place for a rooster. Thus the rooster and drum are symbolic of peace and contentment. When a rooster is shown in a group with a hen and chicks, the rooster represents domestic bliss and wedded happiness.

REFERENCE

KO-006

DIMENSIONS

Length 9.7cm
Width 1.5cm

OSHIGATA

NBTHK Hozon
July 2005

PROVENANCE

Edward Drummond Libbey Collection, USA
Toledo Museum, USA

PHOTOS

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Kozuka_Cock-Drum_Papers