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MFA for Educators

Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

Sheath inro


Nobuyoshi, with a kao


By 1911, purchased by William Sturgis Bigelow (b. 1850–d. 1926), Boston [see note 1]; 1911, gift of Bigelow to the MFA. (Accession Date: April 6, 2004) NOTES: [1] Much of Bigelow's collection of Asian art was formed during his residence in Japan between 1882 and 1889, although he also made acquisitions in Europe and the United States. Bigelow deposited many of these objects at the MFA in 1890 before donating them to the Museum's collection at later dates.

Credit Line

William Sturgis Bigelow Collection

Japanese, Meiji era, Late 19th century


Overall: 5.6 x 5.1 x 1.9 cm (2 3/16 x 2 x 3/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

The outer section of iron, the owl and part of the willow cut in openwork, the moon represented by a large circular opening on each side, some details in gold, the inner section of silver