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This watch design is adapted from an elaborately decorated maki-e lacquer box lid from the Japanese Edo period (1615–1868), with peony scrolls surrounding a design of hawk feathers. It may have been used by a daimyo (provincial warlord) traveling to and from the capital as he served the shogun, the supreme military commander. The whorl of feathers is a crest used by the Inoue family of Mikawa, who were among the closest retainers of the ruling Tokugawa family. The box lid was likely originally used as a cover for a three- legged casket (hokai) for carrying food; Edo period hokai were often among the large, matched sets of lacquer furnishings given as high-status wedding gifts.
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