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Sixteenth-Century Textual References to Chigusa

Translated by Andrew M. Watsky

1. Accounting of Karamono [Karamono oyoso no kazu], circa 1570–73.1 Recorded in the entry for objects owned by Jū no Sōho.

Chikusa, the ōtsubo 千(ち)草(くさ)ノ(の)大(おお)ツボ

2. Tennōjiya Sōgyū, as recorded on Genki 4 [1573].1.24 in his tea diary of gatherings he attended as a guest, Sōgyū takaiki.2 The host was Jū no Sōho; the guests were Sōeki (Sen no Rikyū), Kusabeya Dōsetsu, and Tennōjiya Sōgyū.

Same [year], first month, twenty fourth day, morning   
Jū no Sōho                  Eki, Setsu, Gyū
On the [sunken] hearth, Mitsuda Jōshū’s futon-shaped suspended kettle; a teoke and a kensan tenmoku [tea bowl]. An ōtsubo, the first time I saw it. Chigusa 千草, Insetsu’s tsubo. From Insetsu’s time, there are a [mouth] cover and tsugari.3

3. Tennōjiya Sōgyū, as recorded on Tenshō 6 [1578].12.9 in his tea diary of gatherings he attended as a guest, Sōgyū takaiki.4 The host was Jū no Sōho; the guests were Tennōjiya Dōshitsu, Kusabeya Dōsetsu, and Tennōjiya Sōgyū.

Same [year], twelfth month, ninth day  
Jū no Sōho                  Shitsu, Setsu, Gyū
Item: [Sunken] hearth, Zenkō’s suspended kettle. At the intermission, a Shigaraki [fresh-water container].
After tea, the chatsubo Chigusa千種was brought out, and later was placed in the alcove.
Item: A tada tenmoku [tea bowl] was on a black [lacquer] stand with a foliate rim. A Bizen waste-water vessel.

4. Tennōjiya Sōgyū, as recorded on Tenshō 9 [1581].1.22 in his tea diary of gatherings he attended as a guest, Sōgyū takaiki.5 The host was Jū no Sōho; the guests were Zeniya Sōtotsu, and Tennōjiya Sōgyū.

Same [year], first month, twenty-second day, morning 
Jū no Sōho                  Sōtotsu, Sōgyū
Item: Alcove: “Daruma” hanging; it was Insetsu’s “Daruma.”
Item: On the [sunken] hearth, a suspended kettle on a chain. Behind, a teoke and a Bizen waste-water vessel.
Item: A tada tenmoku [tea bowl] on a [lacquer] stand with a foliate rim.
After tea, the ōtsubo was brought out and shown, and then was placed in the alcove.
The above “Bodhidharma,” perhaps on silk, the brush of Jikifu [Japanese: Ko Chokufu; Chinese: Hu Zhifu, 13th century]; the inscription by Eseigan [i.e., Seigan Ryōe; Chinese: Xiyan Liaohui, 1198–1262].
The mounting: the upper and lower borders are light green[-ground] kinsha, the borders are white-ground kinsha, the inner borders and decorative hanging strips are small-figure dark-blue-ground white brocade.

5. Tennōjiya Sōgyū, as recorded on Tenshō 106 [1582].10.7 in his tea diary of gatherings he attended as a guest, Sōgyū takaiki.7 The host was Kondaya Tokurin; the guests were Tennōjiya Dōshitsu, Zeniya Sōtotsu, and Tennōjiya Sōgyū.

Same [year], tenth month, seventh day, morning           
Kondaya Tokurin                    Dōshitsu, Sōtotsu, Sōgyū
Item: Alcove: the chatsubo Chigusa千草, from the start, by itself. Later it was taken down [to be examined]. Dōshitsu placed it [back] in the alcove.

6. Imai Sōkyū, as recorded on Tenshō 118 [1583].1.27 in his tea diary, Imai Sōkyū chanoyu nikki nukigaki.9 The host was Kondaya Tokurin; the guests were Imai Sōkyū, Tennōjiya Dōshitsu, Zeniya Sōtotsu.

1583, first month, twenty-seventh day  
Kondaya Tokurin                    Sōkyū, Dōshitsu, Sōtotsu
Item: Sunken hearth: an old kettle, on a chain.
Item: In the alcove was a calligraphy scroll [bokuseki] by Kidō [Chinese: Xutang Zhiyu, 1185–1269]. It was hung from the start, and during the intermission, it was rolled up.
Item: Alcove: the chatsubo Chigusa 千種, in a net bag. A tsurube, a tenmoku [tea bowl] with the implements [dōgu] in it, a nakatsugi; a mentsu, [previously owned by] Insetsu.
Item: The calligraphy scroll [bokuseki]: the paper is one shaku, one sun, one bu high and two shaku, five sun wide. The mounting: the upper and lower borders are olive-brown [kobicha] hoken; the middle borders are white-ground gold brocade; the inner borders and decorative hanging strips are light-green[-ground] silver brocade with purple tassels.
Item: The tsubo Chigusa千種: on the bottom there are blisters [kobu], there is the graph shō 祥, and there are also four ciphers. The[mouth] cover is red-colored [tanshoku] [-ground] gold brocade, and the cord is light blue.

7. Matsuya Hisayoshi, as recorded on Tenshō 14 [1586].4.25 in his tea diary, Matsuya kaiki.10 The host was Kondaya Tokurin; the guests were Matsue Ryūsen and Matsuya.

Fourth month, twenty fifth day 
To Sakai, Kondaya Tokurin, at an unspecified time                 Matsue Ryūsen and Hisayoshi, two people
The room [zashiki] was two-and-a-half mats.
Chigusa千種ōtsubo. Displayed from the start. On the underside of the lid is said to be the name in Nōa[mi]’s brush. It was in a light blue net. The [mouth] cover was red [kō][-ground] gold brocade, and its cord [torio] was light brown [usukicha] colored. The two, both, were old. It was reported that Insetsu had them made, and the [mouth] cover was especially remarkable. [The jar] should hold about five to six kin of tea, had lines at the mouth, at the waist no “distant mountain” [tōyama] lines, the one-color glaze was “quail grain” [uzurame], no fire marks [hoguchi], had an uchiai overlap [in the glaze], the clay was red and remarkable. It is a meibutsu.
Haikatsugi tenmoku [tea bowl], without a stand; a yarō; a mentsu; a tsurube; a ceramic lid rest[tsuchi hikikiri].
            [A description of the meal follows.]

8. Kamiya Sōtan, as recorded on Tenshō 15 [1587].1.6 in his tea diary, Sōtan nikki.11 The host was Kondaya Tokurin; Kamiya Sōtan was the only guest.

Sixth day, morning.
Tokurin gathering        Sōtan, one person.      
Four and a half mat [room]. In the alcove from the beginning a calligraphy scroll [bokuseki] was hung [in the alcove]. At the [one shaku] four sun [square] sunken hearth a pole-and-hook was suspended and an old kettle (a suspended kettle).
A tsurube; in a tenmoku [tea bowl] were implements; a nakatsugi; a mentsu; a lid rest [gotoku]. During the intermission, the calligraphy scroll [bokuseki] was rolled up and the tsubo Chigusa千種 was placed [in the alcove]. The [mouth] cover was red-colored [tanshoku] [-ground] small-figure gold brocade, old, and the closing cord was light blue, and the knot was in the old style, with the knot hanging.
Item: For thin tea, it was a Korean [Kōrai] tea bowl.
Item: The calligraphy scroll [bokuseki]: the paper is about one shaku, one sun high and about two shaku and four or five sun wide; there are twelve columns and the number of graphs is seventy five. The opening is two lines and two graphs, and then it is indented and there are five thin graphs, and then the inner part on the eighth line there are four. The upper and lower borders are olive-brown [kobicha] hokken; the middle borders are white-ground gold brocade (with a pattern of clematis flowers); the inner borders and decorative hanging strips are light green with purple tassels. Flared roller ends (quince). The blank paper is wide. No seal.
[Abstracted illustration of format of calligraphy.]

The tsubo Chigusa千種: the clay is coarse and red, the lower part swells, on the bottom are blisters [kobu], there are four ciphers; the graph shō 祥 is above one cipher. The glaze is thick, and there are many downward flows [nadare]. Below that [the glaze] appears to divide. Three potting lines. From the neck, between two of the nipples [chi, lugs] and above, there are small lines in three areas; in one area in the place between the nipples they cannot be seen. The [mouth] cover is red-colored [-ground], old, gold brocade, and the reverse is light blue.

9. The Records of Yamanoue no Sōji [Yamanoue no Sōji ki], 158812

Chigusa 千種                At Sakai, Kondaya Tokurin.
It was Insetsu’s tsubo.

Glossary

bokuseki: calligraphy scroll by a Chan/Zen monk
bu: linear measurement, about three millimeters
chatsubo: tea-leaf storage jar
dōgu: “implements,” the tea scoop, bamboo whisk, and cloth used for preparing tea
futaoki: lid rest
gotoku: type of lid rest
haikatsugi tenmoku: type of tenmoku tea bowl made at the Chayang kilns in Fujian Province [indent]Haikatsugi means “ash covered,” which refers to the color and texture of the glaze
hoken or hokken: thin, plain-weave silk
kensan tenmoku: type of tenmoku tea bowl made at the Jian kilns in Fujian Province.
kin: a volumetric measurement; one kin is about 600 grams
kinsha: open plain-weave silk fabric with a floating warp pattern in flat gold thread
mentsu: cylindrical unlacquered bentwood waste-water container
nakatsugi: lacquer container for powdered tea
ōtsubo: large jar
shaku: linear measurement, about thirty centimeters
sun: linear measurement, about three centimeters
tada tenmoku: plain black-glazed tenmoku tea bowl
teoke: wood water bucket with a handle
torio: cord tied around neck of jar, over mouth cover
tsubo: jar
tsurube: square freshwater container of unlacquered wood
yarō: lacquer container for powdered tea


Notes: Sixteenth-Century Textual References to Chigusa

1 . Yamada Tetsuya, “Karamono oyoso no kazu (Dōshisha Daigaku Sōgō Jōhō Senta shozō), Kohon meibutsuki: Sono kaidai to honkoku,” Bunka jōhō gaku 4, no. 1 (2009), p. 28.

2. Nagashima Fukutarō,annot., Tennōjiya takaiki, in Chadō koten zenshū, vol. 7, ed. Sen Sōshitsu (Kyoto: Tankōsha, 1959), pp. 185–86.

3. Tsugari normally refers to the cord loops around the mouth of a bag through which a cord is threaded to close the bag. Perhaps Sōgyū used this word mistakenly to refer to the cord used to tie the mouth cover.

4. Nagashima,annot., Tennōjiya takaiki, pp. 289–90.

5. Nagashima,annot., Tennōjiya takaiki, p. 333.

6. Listed in its published version as Tenshō 11 (1583), but as Takeuchi Jun’ichi explains in chapter 5, n. 12, the correct year is Tenshō 10 (1582).

7. Nagashima,annot., Tennōjiya takaiki, p. 392.

8. Listed in its published version as Tenshō 3 (1575), but as Takeuchi Jun’ichi explains in chapter 5, n. 14, the correct year is Tenshō 11 (1583).

9. Nagashima Fukutarō,annot., Imai Sōkyū chanoyu nikki nukigaki, in Chadō koten zenshū, vol. 10, ed. Sen Sōshitsu (Kyoto: Tankōsha, 1961), pp. 26–27.

10. Nagashima Fukutarō,annot., Matsuya kaiki, in Chadō koten zenshū, vol. 9, ed. Sen Sōshitsu (Kyoto: Tankōsha, 1957), p. 163.

11. Haga Kōshirō,annot., Sōtan nikki, in Chadō koten zenshū, vol. 6, ed. Sen Sōshitsu (Kyoto: Tankōsha, 1956), pp. 167–69.

12. Kumakura Isao, annot., Yamanoue Sōji ki tsuketari Chawa shigetsushū, Iwanami Bunko 33-051-1 (Tokyo: Iwanami Shoten, 2006), p. 234.