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Unknown (maker)


Messel-Rosse Collection




folding fan


Folding fan, decorated, face: with solar and lunar disks; guards: a) with soshu inscription; b) with plant with bearded-face. Guards: engraved steel. Sticks: lacquered bamboo. Face: heavy paper, obverse: painted in gold on silver ground; reverse: vice versa.

Production Notes

Possibly an example of a gunsen (war fan), a signal fan used in battle.

Production Place

Japan (maker) (country)

Japanese (maker) (nationality)

Technique Description

Guards: engraved steel. Sticks: lacquered bamboo. Face: heavy paper, obverse: painted in gold on silver ground


length: (guards): 30.4 cm


18th/19th Century


after 1701 to 1900


bought: Anne, Countess of Rosse 1985-01-28 (Filtered for: Applied Arts collection)

Colonel Leonard C. Messel (1872-1953); Anne, Countess of Rosse (1902-1992)

Purchased with a grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and a gift from The Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum


  1. Armstrong, Nancy (1985) Fans from the Fitzwilliam. A Selection from the Messel-Rosse Collection, Cambridge (Cambs.): Fitzwilliam Museum Enterprises Ltd
    [comments: Ill., see n.38.]
  2. Alexander, Helene E. (2001) From the Land of the Fan, London: The Fan Museum [page: 26]
    [comments: Cf. Illustration and description of a gunsen fan]

Other Notes

Accession Number

O.14-1985 (Applied Arts)
(Reference Number: 118475; Input Date: 2005-02-24 / Last Edit: 2011-05-04)

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