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Muromachi Jidai Kabuto Hachi



A sixteen plate suji kabuto hachi, decorated with suji tate, dating from the Muromachi jidai.   I have only been able to find suji tate as a decorative addition, other than on the  on a Myochin Munenori kabuto hachi, and those were several short broad suji tate with hoshi (standing rivets); a shinomi naribashi, mid Edo, and a Yamato Muromachi kabuto hachi, with just a single suji tate.   This is the only example that I have been able to find where the suji tate were so abundant and purely decorative.  This would seem to be a transitional piece between hoshibashi of Heian and Kamakura and the later suji bashi seen in later Muromachi and Edo.   Having shown it to several reputable armor dealers,  the closest dating that was offered was somewhere between 1300 and 1500.  Because of the transitional nature of the suji tate, I would tend to lean toward the earlier dating.   One of the suji tate has become loose at one end, as seen in the photographs.  It is likely that there have been other losses on the two plates to the right, two plates toward the rear on the same side.    



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