備前瓢形徳利 銘 くくり猿びぜんひさごがたとくり くくりざる

  • 岡山県・備前窯
  • 江戸時代
  • 17th century
  • 焼締陶製
  • H-11.9 D-9
  • 所蔵
    益田鈍翁旧蔵
解説(春の玉手箱)

 箱書に「くく里猿」とあり、そう聞けば、まるで括られた猿回しの猿が鎮座しているようで微笑みを誘う。猿回しは、猿が馬の病気を治すという伝承があることから、厩で猿を踊らせたところに端を発しているという。
 瓢箪形の下部は何気なく窪んだようでいて、持ってみると指がぴたりと収まり、手取りがすこぶる良い。細部までよく配慮され丁寧に作られており、手慣れた工人によるものであることが看取できる。備前瓢形徳利で名高いものに「銘 会釈(益田家旧蔵)」があり、本品も益田鈍翁旧蔵の旧蔵であったものである。

Catalogue Entry

The box inscription for this wine bottle states “Kukurizaru," literally linked monkeys, and this name evokes the charming image that maybe the box contains a trained monkey sitting quietly on his leath. Trained monkeys were long believed to cure horse illnesses in Japan, and it is said that good luck would come from having monkeys dance in stables.

There is a small depression in the lower half of this gourd‐shaped bottle, and it just fits the finger of the person holding the bottle to pour from it. The bottle feels just right in the hand. Carefully formed down to these little, seemingly unimportant details, clearly this bottle was made by a skilled craftsman. A famous example of a gourd‐shaped wine bottle is one known as Eshaku, formerly in the Masuda family collection.