A superb quality set of court musician dolls for Japanese Girl’s Day, Hina Matsuri.
The Hina festival takes place every March 3rd in Japan and it is a day of celebration for the well-being of every girl in the family. In earlier days, people were more susceptible to natural disasters or diseases, so in order to keep evil spirits away, this day was spent giving offerings to God. This custom was adopted from the 7th century Chinese ceremony that originally took place on the beach. The Japanese word “Nin gyo” (doll) which means, "human" and "shape" was written on paper,. The human shaped papers were thrown into the ocean so that the “evil spirits” would be swept away by the ocean currents.
Displaying the Emperor and Empress dolls during festivals began sometime in the early Edo period (1603 - 1868) while musicians and other dolls (ladies-in-waiting, guards and servants) were created later.
The approx. dimensions:
Two taller dolls: 8 1/2 inches tall sitting on 2 3/4 inch stools
Three shorter dolls: 6 3/4 inches tall.
This must be a special order set since we have not seen anything similar yet. The stools are new, cut from pieces of a curtain rod. The dolls are very clean with some Gofun (surface) damages on the head of every doll mostly in the side opening areas where the hair was planted once. Circa Meiji period (1868-1912).
The additional photos of each head are shown in my item #529770.
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