Namiki Kabuto Limited Edition
Honour & Glory of Samurai
The Kabuto 兜 depicted in 2015’s Namiki Kabuto Limited Edition is a symbol of authority and decoration in feudal Japan as far back as the Edo period in the 17th century. Only 170 limited edition pieces of Namiki Kabuto fountain pens are made by distinguish Kokokai artisan, Michifumi Kawakuchi 倫史.
The highlights of this Kabuto Fountain Pen are the Kabuto 兜 (helmet) and the Tachi (sword) which marked the glory and the honour of a Samurai armour.
In this instance, the Kabuto and the Tachi are honored on May 5th during the Japanese festival of Tengo no Sekku (the Boys’ Festival). The Kabuto and Tachi are often displayed at home during this special occasion to honor Japanese boys as they enter adulthood. It is the glorious moment when a boy enters into adulthood.
The Kabuto has also come to signify protection and to ward off evil and illness, while the Tachi incorporates the wish for the boys to grow into valiant young man. The Kabuto was an important part of a samurai, and has a symbolic Japanese expression, sayings or codes related to them. One example is Katte kabuto no o o shimeyo (literally means “Tighten the string of the kabuto after winning the war”). This translates to ” don’t lower your efforts after succeeding (compare to “not to rest on one’s laurels”). Another implied meaning is kabuto o nugu (lit. “to take off the kabuto”) means to surrender.
In certain aspects, this new Namiki Kabuto Limited Edition produced for the year 2015 resembles a fabulous vintage Namiki maki-e fountain pen featured in a Namiki reference book authored by Mr. Nakasono.
Official Reference of Namiki Kabuto Limited Edition pen made by Namiki in 2015:
Around the year 1980s, the first edition of The World of Fountain Pen book featured a vintage Kabuto maki-e fountain pen on page 108 and page 120 of this fabulous Namiki reference book.
It is very interesting to make a comparison of the new Namiki Kabuto Limited Edition and the vintage 1925 Kabuto fountain pen. The vintage Kabuto maki-e pen featured a taka-maki-e (high relief lacquer) of the Kabuto with the maedate decoration (executed in taka maki-e as well. However, it does not have a tachi as compared to the new limited edition Kabuto pen.
Comparison of Namiki Kabuto Limited Edition pen and vintage Namiki Kabuto pen The Hachi (dome) of the helmet is inlaid with elegant lustre of Raden 螺鈿 (mother-of-pearl) while the vintage pen is plain.
There is also another stark difference on the new pen which has the waterside sweet flag (in hira maki-e) carrying over from the barrel to the cap, which contrasted gracefully against the Kabuto (helmet) and Tachi (sword) while the vintage pen is just above the helmet only.
Gyoubu Nashiji 刑部梨地 and Nashiji 金梨地 decorated the background of vintage pen while the new pen is just kinpun togidashi maki-e and raden mother of pearl against the roiro background.Closer look of the vintage vest type extremely rare Kabuto Limited Edition pen made in 1925
Overall, the Namiki Kabuto Limited Edition of 2015 is an excellent collector piece and reasonably priced pen. Coupled with the precision of an 18-karat gold nib with rhodium accents and piston ink delivery system which ensures peerless writing quality and long-lasting performance.
Bringing up the best of this Namiki Limited Edition Kabuto, is an exquisitely packaged box with a lavish handcrafted Japanese Paulownia gift box that comes with a matching limited edition ink bottle.
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Namiki is the surname of Ryosuke Namiki, the founder of the Pilot, named Namiki Manufacturing Company until 1938 when it became Pilot Pen Co., Ltd.. The brand name Namiki came to fame in the early 20th Century when Dunhill retailed in the west the Maki-e pens produced by Pilot under the brand Dunhill-Namiki. This partnership has continued to the present day (occasionally Namiki makes a Limited Edition for Dunhill) although Namiki has always been owned by Pilot.
The premium Namiki ranges include the Emperor Collection, Yukari Royale, and Yukari Collection, and this is the brand used by Pilot to sell their the high valued Maki-e pens worldwide.