This lovely antique miniature chest of drawers was made in Japan from lacquered wood with hand-painted details, delicately engraved hardware, and applied pieces of antique Japanese currency. Known as a Tansu chest, it is unmarked and dates from the Meiji to early Taisho period, circa 1880s to 1910s. Traditionally, in Japan, a little chest like this would have been part of the Hinakazari, an elaborate display of hina dolls and accessories used during the Peach Festival or Hinamatsuri / Momo no Sekku.
For modern day use, its diminutive size makes it quite nice for storing jewelry or other tiny treasures. It has a wonderful old presence, beautifully worn by time and use. The lacquer shows quite a bit of wear, as it so often does on these antique pieces, but underneath it all the wooden construction is structurally solid and sturdy. The drawer fronts are decorated with auspicious symbols, including a peach on the bottom drawer, branches of red coral on the middle drawer, and a chrysanthemum design on the round drawer pull attachments.
They are the actual size of the real currency from that era, although I'm unsure as to whether they are trompe-l'oeil or genuine coins. At any rate, they are a neat piece of history and something that makes this lovely antique chest all the more unusual. It weighs 9 ounces unpackaged and measures 5.5" tall, 5" wide, and 2 5/8 deep.Jewelry and other display items are not included. The item "Antique Japan mini Tansu Chest of Drawers jewelry Box Lacquered Wood Meiji 19thC" is in sale since Monday, July 26, 2021. This item is in the category "Antiques\Asian Antiques\Japan\Boxes". The seller is "vintagewiseandwonderful" and is located in Greenville, South Carolina. This item can be shipped worldwide.