Important Cultural PropertyClay figurine

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  • Excavated in Shinpukuji, Iwatsuki-ward, Saitama-city, Saitama Prefecture
  • 1 piece
  • Clay
  • 20.5
  • Jyōmon period/2000-1000 BC
  • Tokyo National Museum
  • J-39223

 This is one of the clay figures called mimizuku (horned owl) dogu that were produced from the latter half of the Late Jomon period to the first half of the Final Jomon period in the Kanto region. A clay cord with notches outlines the face while the eyes and mouth are represented by pasted clay discs. The mimizuku dogu is so called because its humorous face resembles a horned owl.
 As the name suggests, this one also has a heart-shaped face with big, yet cute round eyes and a mouth. It is assumed that the many projections that stick out of the head are representations of a comb or hairstyle and that the discs pasted on the ears are earrings. Compared to the three-dimensional big head, the body is flat and in contrast with the short arms extending from the shoulders, the legs are long. A red color remains all over the figure and clay cords are pasted from the chest and shoulders to the navel on the body. A kyoshimon (saw-tooth pattern) is applied to the hips and a jomon (straw rope pattern) is applied to the legs.
 The molding representation of dogu provides a valuable material not only for the understanding of the high molding capability of the Jomon people, but also for the study of manners and customs, such as the hairstyles, accessories and clothing, of the Jomon period.