Six mysterious objects (or not so mysterious?)


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Posted by Dave Bull on October 01, 2002 at 06:16:32:

Once again, may I draw on the vast store of knowledge accumulated by the readers of this message board?

I am currently making a reproduction of a Hokkei surimono design. The main image depicts two jolly fellows - Daikoku and Ebisu surrounded by various things - fish in a basket, hammer, bag, etc. etc., most of which are 'standard' items in the collection of symbols associated with these gents.

But the background of the design is filled with another group of items, and understanding the symbolism of these items is not turning out to be so simple.

Here's an image showing a small portion of the background of the print:

This pattern of six items is repeated again and again over the entire background. My question to you is simple: What are these six items, and what is the symbolism involved?


  1. a rolled-up scroll
  2. a straw raincoat
  3. ?
  4. ?
  5. a straw hat?
  6. a bag ...

Thanks for any ideas!

Dave Bull



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