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Flowery Moon Night on The Spring River Satsuma Sake Cup

Antique Japanese Kutani Guinomi
Flowery Moon Night
On The Spring River

Signed Kutani Yozan. Circa: Late Meiji, 1910
H.3 in.(7.5cm), W.2.75 in.(7cm), D.2.75 in.(7cm)
Condition: excellent!

Private Collection


The first Kutani Kiln was built by the lord of Daishoji Fief in Ishikawa in the mid 17th century, following the discovery of a porcelain mine at the Kutani Village. Hand signed Yozan of Kutani, there are many features set this Satsuma style sake cup in a class of its own. At first glance, one noticed the cup is free from a crackled glaze but made from translucent white porcelain. With its straight--sided simple shape, which furthers our focus on the elaborate motifs, and on the five wraparound courtly scenes that illustrated a princely romantic story, in eye-catching details that inevitably invite a closer look. Only then the true wonder reveals inside this small guinomi-- in a 259 written microscopic kanji characters, of the famous Chinese poetry "A Flowery Moon Night on the Spring River" by the Tang Dynasty Zhang Ruoxu (618-907 AD.) The calligraphy is signed Kozan.

Flowery Moon Night on The Spring River Satsuma Porcelain CupSatsuma Porcelain Cup
Satsuma Porcelain Cup
Satsuma Porcelain CupSatsuma Porcelain Cup
Kutani Yozan Mark
Flowery Moon Night on The Spring River Calligraphy

In spring the river rises as high as the sea, And with the riverís rise the moon uprises bright. She follows the rolling waves for ten thousand li, And where the river flows, there overflows her light. The river winds around the fragrant islet where The blooming flowers in her light all look like snow. You cannot tell her beams from hoar frost in the air, Nor from white sand upon Farewell Beach below. No dust has stained the water blending with the skies; A lonely wheel like moon shines brilliant far and wide. Who by the riverside first saw the moon arise? When did the moon first see a man by riverside? Ah, generations have come and pasted away; From year to year the moons look alike, old and new. We do not know tonight for whom she sheds her ray, But hear the river say to its water adieu. Away, away is sailing a single cloud white; On Farewell Beach pine away maples green. Where is the wanderer sailing his boat tonight? Who, pining away, on the moonlit rails would learn? Alas! The moon is lingering over the tower; It should have seen the dressing table of the fair. She rolls the curtain up and light comes in her bower; She washes but canít wash away the moonbeams there. She sees the moon, but her beloved is out of sight; Sheíd follow it to shine on her beloved oneís face. But message-bearing swans canít fly out of moonlight, Nor can letter-sending fish leap out of their place. Last night he dreamed that falling flowers would not stay. Alas! He canít go home, although half spring has gone. The running water bearing spring will pass away; The moon declining over the pool will sink anon. The moon declining sinks into a heavy mist; Itís a long way between southern rivers and eastern seas. How many can go home by moonlight who are missed? The sinking moon sheds yearning oíer riverside trees.

Last BuddhaFuture Buddha
Estimate Value: $600

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