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Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

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Basic Information

Accession Number:1885M2996
Collection:Applied Art - Asian
Date:1840 - 1860


Inro are small boxes, usually of several compartments, used to carry medicines. They were first produced in the 17th century, and were worn until the beginning of the 20th century when Western dress was introduced into Japan. They were worn suspended on a twin cord from the obi (sash) secured by a netsuke (toggle) and an ojime (bead). This four-box inro has an overall pattern of a bridge across a river, one end of the bridge rises into clouds, with trees and a crescent moon. The interior of the inro is a red-brown speckled gold on black.

Presented by John Feeney.

Further Information

Production Period:Edo Period (1600-1868)
Medium:Lacquerwork, inlaid with pearl.
Place of Origin:Japan


Height:86 mm
Width:60 mm
Depth:22 mm