Four-Piece Lacquer Writing Set Maker: Unknown

late 19th–early 20th century

Asian Art

The three women depicted on the lid of this lacquer box are called Oharame. They sell country products such as firewood and flowers, seen here carried on their heads as they travel from the suburbs of Kyoto to the city proper. Oharame were depicted in paintings from the end of the eighteenth century onward, probably because of city dwellers' interest in fresh products from the countryside as well as in the refreshing look of country girls. Judging from the lacquer style, the shallow box shape, and the sharp edges of the four corners of the box, this writing set was made in the late nineteenth or early twentieth century. The silver applied to the faces and hands of the women has oxidized and now appears darker than was originally intended.


Togidashi maki-e, kirikane lacquer box with silver chrysanthemum water dropper, inkstone, and brush


6 11/16 × 6 1/8 × 1 1/8 in. (17 × 15.5 × 2.8 cm)

Credit Line

Anonymous Gift

Accession Number



Meiji era (1868–1912)


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Private Collection, New York; given to the Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn., 1947
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