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Archaeology

Male Haniwa Figurine

  • Height: 75.0 cm
  • Kofun Period (6th Century)
  • Excavation site: Wakiya, Gunma Prefecture
  • Important Art Object
  • JK 281

Human-figured haniwa figurines have generally been found in tumuli postdating the mid-5th Century. Earlier tumuli tend to have non-human haniwa forms, such as canopies, shields, armor and houses. Many human-figured haniwa, including female shamans, dancers, people in full dress, warriors, farmers, harpists, and hawking men, have been found in the Kanto district.

This male figure wears a sedge hat and a necklace and dresses his hair in the mizura style. He wears a short sword, and carries a hoe on his right shoulder.

Burial styles changed as stone room tumuli became more common.
Typically, several types of clay figurines would be arranged in front of the stone room, almost as if they were attendents at the burial.

Human-figured haniwa are helpful in studying costumes and customs of the periods in which they were made.

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