Original Japanese WWII Service Worn Hand Painted Cloth Good Luck Flag - 23" x 23"
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. We just purchased this flag from a private collector, and the story they were told was that it was brought back from the "Island Hopping" of the WWII Pacific theater. It shows quite a bit of wear, and probably 25 of the flag is missing, apparently as it was ripped of where it was found by the soldier that brought it back. Unfortunately that is all we know, and this is one flag we really wish could talk, as we're sure it has some stories to tell.
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 good amount of the writing radiates out from the "sun", which are usually the names of many friends and family.
The flag measures approximately 23" x 23", and is made of what appears to be cotton or maybe linen, with the red "sun" a separate wool piece stitched into the middle. The white cloth has faded to a beige color, a typical process called age toning. The writing on the remaining flag is mostly clear, and would make a great research project for someone able to read WWII Era Japanese.
Flag is in very good condition and is the real deal: a genuine USGI "bring back"!
The flag itself shows quite a bit of age and wear: this has the look of a flag that was actually out in the field, with the weathering and wear to show it. Aside from the missing right side, there is also some tearing, and the "sun" shows quite a bit of wear to the less resilient wool.
A great service worn example, ready to research and 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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