Original Japanese WWII Battle Damaged and Stained Hand Painted Cloth Good Luck Flag With Lots of Signatures - 28” x 31”
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. This hand painted cloth flag is marked with battle quotes such as "Banzai", and "Good Luck". As with many good luck flags, the flag is marked with the Japanese phrase 久 長 運 武 祈, which reads Bu un Chou kyu Inoru ("A prayer that your military fortunes be long lasting.")
It is also signed with the names of many friends and family, some radiating out from the center. The flag measures approximately 28” x 31”, and is made of what appears to be rayon cloth, an early faux silk semi-synthetic material made from wood, with the red "sun" dyed into the middle. Flag is in good condition and is the real deal: a genuine US GI "bring back"!
The flag itself has a few water stains and some splits where the paint / ink has degraded the fabric, as well as light overall age toning from being around 80 years old. The writing is still clearly legible in most spots, and this would make a fine display piece for a wall or glass table, or even a translation project. There are sections of the flag missing with areas of old repairs to preserve it. This is truly a beautiful example of a battlefield pickup, one that saw extensive and brutal fighting.
There are torn sections of the flag, tears throughout and even a few rust colored stains which has the possibility of being exactly what you think it is. This flag definitely has the appearance of being hung at a position that saw regular and constant combat with an opposing force and was then removed, probably by a Marine and brought home after the war.
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 is completely unique and is written in old KANJI. The writings are mainly Japanese names of this soldier's family and friends with quotes and phrases.
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