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Daikoku on shrine (99)

Figure of a deity
Edo period, 18th century
H.: 15.5 cm (H.: 31 cm for shrine)
H.: 22 cm – W.: 14 cm (figure alone)

Daikoku is a god of wealth and a tutelary deity of the kitchen. He is commonly depicted stepping on the straw rice bags, wearing a black hat with a small mallet in his hand and a big bag on his shoulder. People believed that this god would protect the house and bring good fortune. In accordance with folk belief, this figure was placed in the kitchen or in the household’s Shinto altar. Daikoku is the Japanese form of Mahakala, the protector of dharma in Buddhism. As an indigenous deity in Japan, he is often paired with Ebisu.

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