Surcoats for children are very rare. This example probably was made for use in the Genpukushiki ceremony, in which the son of a samurai family was officially recognized as an adult and which usually was held when the boy was between the ages of twelve and fifteen. The fine materials and workmanship of this surcoat indicate that it was made for a member of an upper-class family.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Arms and Armor: Notable Acquisitions 2003–2014," November 11, 2014–December 6, 2015.
Artist: Helmet bowl signed Saotome Iyetada (Japanese, Edo period, active early–mid-19th century)Date: 16th and 18th centuriesMedium: Iron, lacquer, silk, gilt copperAccession: 14.100.172On view in:Gallery 377