Original Japanese WWII Small Service Worn Hand Painted Cloth Good Luck Flag - 15 1/2" x 19"
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 "Good Luck" and "For Bravery". It is also signed with the names of friends and family, written radiating out from the center. The flag measures approximately 15 1/2" x 19", and is made of what appears to be silk cloth, with the red "sun" dyed into the middle. Flag is in service worn condition and is the real deal: a genuine USGI "bring back"!
Unlike many we see, this is a good luck flag that actually has a significant amount of service wear. It is quite delicate, with tears, and some small pieces have already fallen off. It is very lightweight, and we believe it to be silk, which unfortunately is not as resilient as the rayon or cotton often used with these flags.. However, the writing is still very legible, and this would make a fine display piece for a wall or glass table, or even a translation project.
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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