Teacup and saucer with Gion-mamori crest design

Fukagawa-seijiprobably 1910, Meiji period

Tachibana Museum

Tachibana Museum
Fukuoka-ken, Japan

This teacup and saucer set is from a tea set which was ordered to make along with the completion of Count Tachibana family’s Western-style guest house in 1910. Today, 31 pieces of the tea set remain, consisting of 4 kinds of items: cups and saucers, dessert plates, a teapot and a sugar bowl. Each piece is embellished with the blue crest of the Tachibana family and a gold Yoraku pattern. The bright blue color of the crest is created with gosu (cobalt oxide). The gold Yoraku pattern represents the classic Ko-imari style with motifs of a fan-shaped leaf and kensaki (a sword point) which are alternatively applied inside the petal-shaped enclosures. The color combination of blue and gold on the white porcelain gives a noble and refreshing impression.
A motif of Mt. Fuji with a flowing river was branded on the base of each piece and the back lid of the teapot. This motif was a trade mark of Fukagawa Seiji, a craft company of Arita ware appointed to the official purveyor of the Imperial Household.


  • Title: Teacup and saucer with Gion-mamori crest design
  • Creator: Fukagawa-seiji
  • Date Created: probably 1910, Meiji period
  • Location Created: Arita, Japan
  • Physical Dimensions: <Cup>H: 5.1cm; Dia: 8.4cm (mouth), 3.5cm (base) <saucer>H: 2.2cm; Dia: 13.1cm
  • Type: Ceramic

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