This Japanese Vintage Pair of Heishi Suzuhan's pewter and tin tokkuri or sake bottles tokkuri or sake bottles dates to between the Taisho period of 1912-1926 and early Showa period of 1926-1989. Heishi is the word for this shape of tokkuri or sake bottles, it is quite unique. The history of the shape dates back to the 1500 - 1699's and the Muromachi through Edo periods. The shape was and is most often used in the temple and for ceremonial or ritual reasons. ri Standing proud and tall, used but not worn, they are marked on the bottom with the well known Suzuya-Hanbei maker mark. Suzu means tin or pewter, and the -han part is for Hanbei. Suzuya-Hanbei written 鈴屋 is the name for one of the first persons in Japan who began using pewter and tin in this fashion in the 1800, see more below. They are now known as Suzuhan, a world renowned award-winning maker of metal ware, from Osaka. The tomobako as well as the bottom of the bottles are inscribed with the Suzuhan nqme and stamp respectively. A tomobako is important to the value of the items it holds as well as the future safe keeping. There is a set of Suzuhan on Worthpoint for comparison. They are in very good overall condition with no damages, the box is showing its age and there is some surface wear but are still in very good condition and very fine nd unique peweter and tin tokkuri.
SIZE: Approximately: Height 7.7" or 19.5 cm, Diameter 3.7" or 9.5 cm.Weight total with box pre packed: 1081 grams or 2.38 lbs
excerpt from ebook, 'Japan in the Taisho era 1912-1926'
Mr. Nakamura Hambei, descendant family member in Hambei’s pewter ware store, and popularly called 'Suzuhan," has its head office at 4-chome, Minami-Kyuhoji-machi, Higashi-ku, Osaka, and a branch office at Sayegi-cho, Kanda-ku, Tokyo, where the goods are sold wholesale and retail, and where a large export business in general pewter goods is carried on'. This firm is one of the oldest in this line of business, it having been inaugurated by Suzuya Harabei, during the first quarter of the 18th century, at the present site. The goods manufactured are supplied to the domestic market through the firm's ofiices in Osaka and Tokyo, and exported to almost every country in Europe, America, and Asia. The best standard of excellence is strictly maintained in all goods, as they are made under able and competent supervision, and the prices are at the lowest possible level. The number of honours awarded to the firm at various exhibitions testifies to these facts.
History of Suzuhan Tin
During the Tokugawa Shogunate regime, the firm was appointed makers to the Shogunate family and a number of local daimyo families, and the firm's goods were regarded as the best in the market. The Imperial Restoration Court has, from time to time, commissioned the firm to manufacture different pieces of silver and pewter ware, encouraging the firm to improve the goods, and extend their market overseas. The firm now manufactures silver, pewter, antimony, and nickel ware in many designs, shapes, sizes, for various uses, at its factories in Osaka under the strict supervision of the proprietor.
Pewter, as Discussed on Kovel's site:
Pewter is a metal alloy of tin and lead. Some of the pewter made after 1840 has a slightly different composition and is called Britannia metal. American pewter was made as early as 1639. This later type of pewter was worked by machine; the earlier pieces were made by hand. In the 1920s pewter came back into fashion and pieces were often marked Genuine Pewter. Eighteenth-, nineteenth-, and twentieth-century examples are listed here.
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