This shallow cup is one of three, decorated by a chrysanthemum in full bloom. In an old-fashioned wedding ceremony, both the bride and the groom sipped sake from each of three cups; sake was considered a purifying agent.
Kyodai (makeup set), 19th century, Wood, lacquer, bronze, brass, Japan, H: 25 5/8 in, L: 10 3/4 in (H: 65.1 cm, L: 27.3 cm). This is a Kyodai, or makeup set. It is ornamented with chrysanthemum-shaped gilt metal fittings and gold maki-e shells and aquatic plants. The set includes a water container, oil container, two white power boxes, and a mirror.
Obon is a Japanese Buddhist custom to honor the spirits of our ancestors. The Obon is celebrated in July in Eastern Japan, while in Western Japan it's in August. Lanterns are lit to guide the ancestors' spirits in the Butsudan (Buddhist home altars for enshrining ancestors) room during obon. It's believed that each year during obon, the ancestors' spirits return to this world to visit.