About this objectThe use of incense is said to have started in Japan from around the 6th century and became part of Buddhist rituals, although it later had a wider usage. The main ingredients were sandalwood and agarwood, from trees native to south and southeast Asia. Incense burners were made in various shapes, some suspended from chains to be swung to dispense the incense and others with a long handle. This one has a handle described as in the shape of a magpie's tail, and a flower-shaped pedestal. It has been tentatively associated with the Eastern Hall at Hōryūji (法隆寺) [EXH20] and use by Eji (慧慈), the Buddhist master of Prince Shōtoku (聖徳太子, 574–622) [see EXH22].
Date Made7th century
Subject and Association KeywordsLiving in Belief
Subject and Association DescriptionLearn More: Gatten 1977; Horiguchi and Jung 2013
Medium and MaterialsGilded brass
MeasurementsL. 39.0, mouth D. of burner 13.3, H. 10.2.