Original Japanese WWII Hand Painted Cloth Good Luck Flag With Many Signatures - 29” x 36”
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. Just purchased from a large military auction. This hand painted cloth flag is marked with battle quotes such as "Banzai", and "Good Luck for Bravery". As with many good luck flags, the flags are usually marked across the the top 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."), but this one appears to be marked across the top wishing the soldier, Mr Genzo Tamaki, a “Triumphant Return”.
It is also signed with the names of many friends and family. The flag measures approximately 29” x 36” and is made of what appears to be early rayon silk or something similar, with the red "sun" dyed into the middle. Overall the flag is in a well worn condition with a lot of tearing, holes and thread loss. This appears to be a flag that was flown for many years.
The writing is still clearly legible, and this would make a fine display piece for a wall or glass table, or even a translation project. The flag still has the original corner ties fully intact, along with brown 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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