Five carved ivory figures and a drum on long wooden base
- Object Number: STKMG:DA.1964.22
- Simple Name: ivory figures
- Production Place: Japan
- Creation, production or manufacture details: carving
- Summary: Five carved ivory figures and a drum on long wooden base. One man is holding a tea-bowl, another a box and covered bowl, a third man, Budai, is holding a begging bowl, a fourth man has one arm raised and a stick in the other. The fifth figure is a woman playing a lute. Originally likely to have comprised of seven figures, the seven Gods of good fortune, shichifukujin.
- Terms:decorative arts
- Additional Notes: The seven gods of good fortune are a group of deities from Japan, China and India. Each one existed independently, for example, Hotei or the laughing Buddha, before a Japanese monk, Tenkai, created the group in the seventeenth century. Each God represents a different virtue, longevity, dignity, candor, fortune, amiability, magnanimity and popularity. The seven gods travel on a fortune ship handing out good fortune to believers in the New Year.
- Additional Notes: Budai is the Chinese god of contentment and abundance. Also known as the laughing Buddha. Often shown carrying a large sack, Budai means sack cloth in Chinese. The sack never empties and is filled with precious objects.
- Contact: Potteries Museum and Art Gallery