Original Japanese WWII Named Hand Painted Good Luck "Victory" Flag - 29" x 37"
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. Just purchased from a large military auction. This hand painted cloth flag is not like most that we have seen. It is a standard "Good Luck" flag size, but the writing on it, which has been translated, is not like we see on the typical example. From information we were provided, the flag reads:
Congratulations on the great Victory!
Banzai for the Imperial Army Conquering The Fall of Kankouyoa!
From the Turugitani Ward Office Workers
The place "Kankou" is Japanese for "Hankou" (corresponds to 漢口 on the flag). Hankou (Kankou) is a Chinese town forming part of the metropolis of Wuhan, where a battle was fought in 1938 between Chinese and Japanese forces. The Japanese won, hence the writing on the flag. The top line reads, from left to right: "祝漢口隕落紀念" ("[For] Remembering the Celebration of (or "the Congratulations on") the Fall of Hankou (Kankou)". "隕落" should be a compound word meaning "fall." Right, top down says: "[Humbly] Presented [for] the Imperial Army's Great Victory." Left, top down is "Banzai."
The flag measures approximately 29"H x 37"W, and is made of standard linen or muslin cloth. Flag is in very good condition and is the real deal: a genuine USGI "bring back"!
The flag itself has a few water stains and some areas of dirt, but nothing major aside from the usual age toning. There is a ring stain around the "sun", caused most likely by moisture condensing on the colored area, which radiates heat better, and gets cold before the white portions. The flag still has both sets of original corner ties fully intact, along with gold faux leather corner reinforcements.
Ready to display!
The Good Luck Flag, known as hinomaru yosegaki (日の丸 寄せ書き) in the Japanese language, was a traditional gift for Japanese servicemen deployed during the military campaigns of the Empire of Japan, though most notably during World War II. The flag given to a soldier was a national flag signed by friends and family, often with short messages wishing the soldier victory, safety, and good luck.
The Japanese call their country's flag hinomaru, which translates literally to "sun-round", referencing the red circle on a white field. When the hinomaru was signed, the Japanese characters were usually written vertically, and radiated outward from the edge of the red circle. This practice is referenced in the second term, yosegaki, meaning "sideways-writing". The phrase hinomaru-yosegaki can be interpreted as "To write sideways around the red sun", describing the appearance of the signed flag. This particular example completely unique is written in old KANJI the writing are mainly Japanese names of this soldier's family and friends with quotes and phrases.
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