Beautiful and rare pair of antique old Imari plates from the Edo period (1603 to 1868). Hizen ware is pottery and porcelain (such as Imari, Hirado, and Nabeshima wares) produced in Hizen, old province of Kyushu Island, Japan. They are painted with the old, muted cobalt shade of blue with iron red and gilt accents. Plates have scalloped borders and are decorated with a central ancient Japanese family crest or kamon and a border embellished with bamboo, prunus and pine leaves representing the Three Friends of Winter (Sho-Chiku-Bai). Kamon were emblems originally used to identify Japan's aristocratic families. This kamon is somewhat similar to the crest used by the Tokugawa family, often referred to as the triple hollyhock although the actual plant is wild ginger or Asarum. Each plate is marked on the reverse with a Running (cursive) Fuku ("Good fortune" or "Happiness") mark in a double square, a mark used on Hizen ware in the Edo period. The calligraphy's fine lines and muted colors is indicative of an early piece. In very good used condition with wear to gilt and minor imperfections from the time of manufacture as shown. Color intensity varies from plate to plate consistent with an antique, hand-made piece. Shipped fully insured with tracking number. Price is for one pair (2 plates).
Measurements: 7.25" (18.4 cm) diameter approximately.