Extremely rare. A pair of hand shrines for husband and wife, showing on the inside the bodhisattva Fugen (larger one) and Monju (smaller one). Monju – on the lion - is holding a nyoi scepter, while Fugen – on the elephant – holds a lotus flower topped by a pagoda. Extremely fine carving, especially fine in the rendering of the lion and the elephant with exquisite painting in mineral colors, gofun and gold. The outside of each shrine covered in fine nashiji lacquer, over which in slightly raised gold lacquer a Tokugawa mon on the cover and the same mon on the back in silver. The zushi must have been made by special order for someone in the Tokugawa family line. Japan, Edo period, early 19th century.
H 2-½ inches; 2-9/16 inches.
Comes with kiri-wood storage box.
Fugen and Monju bosatsu (Compassion and Wisdom) are the two bodhisattva that accompany the historical Buddha Shakyamuni / Shaka Nyorai.