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A Japanese silk shihan battle flag (hata sashimono) with stupa (gorinto) crest. The orange banner with a resist dyed serrated edge design to the left of the center gorinto stupa.  A gorinto, literally "five wheeled pagoda" represents the five elements esoteric Buddhists believe make up the universe; earth, water, fire, wind and mu (emptiness). The banner, which was worn on the back of a mounted samurai, is reinforced with a grid work of stitching. The banner was flown on the back of a samurai's armor as a form of identification on the battlefield, to define friend from foe and to help a commander viewing the battlefield from a distance in his strategy. The banner with wear and damage.  Mounted.  
Edo Period, 18th century 
34" x 24½", Mounted 23¾” x 35¼” x 3" thick

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