An antique Japanese Choba Tansu (merchant Chest) made of Hinoki (Cypress), Kirinoki (Paulownia) and Suginoki (Cryptomeria) woods. Original Shunkei Nuri (lacquer) on the front with a wiped lacquer technique on the top and sides which accentuates the beautiful grain pattern of the woods. The backs of all the drawers were made using very thick wood. The hand made iron hardware is also original including the stylized Gumbai handles and the bronze sliding door handles. Natural aged dark patina surrounds the handles and lock plates which is an added testament to its function and its age.
Removal of the bottom sliding doors shows three drawers and a secure vertical wood panel. Pushing in the false frame above the upper drawer releases a latch that allows the panel to be removed revealing a secret hiding drawer.
Merchant chests such as this one was often displayed in a prominent location of a store. Acting as a form of advertisement to the success of the business, the owner would proudly use this chest to store valuables, money and merchant records & documents.
Age: Early Meiji Era (1868-1880)
Dimensions: 36 1/2″ Wide x 37 3/4″ High x 16 1/4″ Deep