Antique Japanese Meiji Kasuga "Deer" Granite Stone Garden Pagoda Lantern 1800

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SKU BB-10105


Antique Japanese Meiji period fine tall Kasuga granite stone pedestal garden lantern, circa 1800.
This well proportioned carved stone lantern is fashioned in six parts, with a classic lotus Kasuga and finial Hohju, light chamber Hibukuro, turned crane leg pedestal and well detailed base, stone kiso. The lantern is finely carved with beautifully carved designs including a deer on its firebox, and a latice carved 'window' to allow the light to shine. The carved lotus shaped base stone should be set into the ground to provide the lantern with a solid footing and stability. Condition is very good indeed, all the parts are original and the lantern is guaranteed to be a period stone lantern from the early 1800s.

Provenance: acquired from the Pacific Northwest Estate of Mr Nick Gluth, Mr Gluth purchased this wonderful antique stone lantern in the 1980s for $20,000.

Stone lanterns, Ishidoro were introduced to Japan via Korea and China in the 6th century AD. They were used initially in temples and later shrines as votive lights. About the 16th century stone lanterns were adopted for secular purposes and designed and placed in the gardens of tea houses and private residences made famous by tea master Sen Rikkyu (1522-1592).
Japan’s stone lantern tradition is a concept that was imported from India and has existed in Japanese temples and gardens since the 7th century.
Japan’s lantern tradition was originally conceived as entrance lighting and guardians to temples and pagodas and when lit served as an offering to Buddha. Some of the earliest stone lanterns were carved with Buddhist images on the firebox and usually had compartments for an oil lamp or candle. Later on, they became more secular in nature, and their use evolved as functional and decorative elements in traditional Japanese tea gardens where they served as a spiritual source of light for evening tea ceremonies. Often carved from granite stone, today’s vintage survivors serve as fashionable aesthetic elements in modern day Japanese and Asian inspired gardens. Today, during festivals and ceremonies, rice paper is often cut to fit stone lantern windows to increase reflection of candles placed inside them. Soon these paper lenses disappear and for one special evening and event, the glow is surreal.
There are four main categories of antique Japanese stone lanterns. Tachi-gata are pedestal lanterns such as the famous Kasuga Zodiac lanterns, ikekome-gata are the so-called buried lanterns, oki-gata are small often portable lanterns, and yukimi-gata are renown as “water reflection” lanterns. This latter Yukimi style version perhaps Japan’s most Popular Style, is often mislabeled by westerners as “snow viewing” lantern- thought to accumulate a stack of snow during winter time in America’s northern areas.
Names for specific lantern styles often originate from nearby landmarks or natural functions. The Kasuga lantern is fashioned after the ancient lanterns found in Shino shrines of Nara, Japan and some date back to 700 AD. Kasugas typically have a cylindrical column in the form of a bird (crane’s) leg according to some authorities, surmounted by a small ring. Above this is the firebox, generally hexagonal in shape, which is topped with a lotus flower rooftop. Kasuga lanterns are frequently seen at entrances to Japanese tea gardens and as a focal point to modern day gardens. Water reflection or snow viewing lanterns Yukimi-doro are squat and broad roofed and date back to the early Edo period (16th century) and are probably so named because of the attractive capture of snowfall on their broad roof. They comprise a roof, firebox, and base components of various styles. Oki-gata, small portable lanterns are among the rarest of all because few were created and fewer still survived the ravages of time.


74 inches high × 27 inches wide × 29 inches deep


high × wide x deep

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