Original Battle-Worn WWII Japanese “Good Luck” Flag with Many Signatures and Stains - 29" x 40"
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. Just purchased from a Pacific War collector at a military show! This hand painted cloth flag is marked with battle quotes, usually phrases such as "Banzai", and "Good Luck for Bravery". As with most good luck flags, it is marked with 久 長 運 武 祈 on the right hand side, second line in, which reads Bu un Chou kyu Inoru ("A prayer that your military fortunes be long lasting.")
This flag is unique in that the sun portion of the flag is a separate piece, being sewn to the center of the flag. This flag is a rather dramatic souvenir from the battlefields of the south Pacific, in that it appears to have some small holes from the “peppering” of shrapnel, and various stains that appear to be blood.
The flag measures approximately 29" x 40", and looks to be made of rayon, and early synthetic silk cloth made from wood. It has a red "sun" made from a piece of red rayon sewn into the middle. The flag is the real deal: a genuine USGI "bring back"!
The flag itself has some water stains and small tears, as well as overall age toning. The writing is still quite legible, and this would make a fine display piece for a wall or glass table, or a translation project. The flag does not have any corner reinforcements, and does not appear to have been made with them.
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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