Original Japanese WWII Hand Painted Cloth Good Luck Flag - 27" x 35"
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. Just purchased as part of a large Pacific War private collection. This hand painted cloth flag is marked with battle quotes such as "Banzai", and "Good Luck". It has a good amount of Japanese writing, which we unfortunately have not been able to translate. A lot the writing radiates out from the "sun", which are usually the names of many friends and family. There are also Kanji at the four corners of the flag, as well as what looks to be a dedication on the right hand side.
The flag measures approximately 27" x 35", and is made of what appears to be rayon cloth, with the red "sun" dyed into the middle. The white cloth has partly faded to a beige color, a typical process called age toning. The writing is all clear, and would make a great research project for someone able to read WWII Era Japanese.
There are some holes and stains as shown, but they do not detract much from the overall look. The gold foil corner reinforcements are present, but worn, with attached hanging ties.
Flag is in very good condition and is the real deal: a genuine USGI "bring back"!
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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