Period: Meiji (1868-1912)

Date: ca. 1900

Culture: Japanese

Medium: cotton

Dimensions: Length at CB (a): 36 3/8 in. (92.4 cm)
Length at CB (b): 31 1/4 in. (79.4 cm)
Length (c): 40 in. (101.6 cm)

Classification: Main dress-Menswear

Credit Line: Purchase, Irene Lewisohn and Alice L. Crowley Bequests, 1983

Accession Number: 1983.158a–c


Surviving Japanese firemen's jackets of the Edo and Meiji periods often have boldly dye-patterned linings like this one. The heavy quilted jackets, worn wet, provided protection for the firefighters, and some scholars suggest that the often supernatural images on the linings were meant to add to his safety.

The lining of this jacket depicts a climactic scene in a story from the Kojiki (Chronicle of Ancient Matters). Susa-n-o-mikoto, the brother of the sun goddess, saves the eighth and last daughter of an elderly couple from being eaten by a dragon.