18 March 2008
A Yokohagi Do Gusoku Suit of Armor
Edo period (18th century), helmet signed Munemasa saku
Russet-iron armor laced in blue comprising a sixty-two plate russet-iron suji bachi with rivets visible around the crown and mounted with a five-stage gold and shakudo tehen kanamono carved as a chrysanthemum, the front of the bowl adorned with gilt-metal and shakudo shinodare, mounted with a five-lame solid-plate neck guard decorated on the turnbacks with doe skin, purple lacing and gilt-metal family crests, the edges of the turnbacks and peak trimmed in fukurin, gold-lacquer disc maedate, russet-iron face mask forged in two pieces and applied with a bushy animal-hair moustache and five-lame hinged throat guard; yoko-hagi do constructed of five sections of horizontal plates with vertical lacing, the center of the chest plate with a hinged compartment, gilt-metal kanamono, the cuirass fitted with seven sections of five-lame tassets; chu-sode; black-lacquer tsutsu gote with plates on the forearms terminating in standing flanges and with removeable gauntlets constructed of plates and chain mail; "raft"-style haidate; tsutsu suneate; one armor box; no stand
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The hinged compartment on the front of the cuirass may have been used to hold documents or personal effects. It is rare to find armors with this detail. Gauntlets are also uncommon in Japanese armor.
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