A lacquered papier mache dish which held silk cocoons in warm water as they were hand reeled. It measures 30cm in diameter and has some chips, discolouration and other imperfections.
It’s difficult to read most of the text on the back but it does show that it was sold by the Tamiya Goro shop in Yachi in Yamagata Prefecture in northern Japan. I’ve discovered that Tamiya Goro started a successful and innovative zori footwear business in the late 19th century which is now a slipper factory. (It’s always interesting searching old business names if you know the area where they were, they have often survived down the generations in one form or another!) Cocoon bowls were often wood or metal and larger than this. I assume cheaper commercially made versions like this were sold to families who raised and/or reeled silk as a side business, a practice that continued into the 20th century. This would make a characterful display piece. Late 19th - early 20th century.
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