Vintage Japanese Gambling Toy with Daruma Spinning Top by Kakizawa Korenobu


Dimensions: 1-1/8”h x 4-1/4” dia. (Daruma spinning top 1-7/8” h x 1-0” dia)

This beautiful top (Koma) is handmade of one piece of wood used for amusement and gambling and made in Narugo. The kiji-shi (woodworkers), during this period, used their spare time making souvenirs for visitors at the Onsens. This game was created for women, especially popular during the New Year holidays in Japan. The base is a beautifully formed toy with a top having a red floral motif and divisions with a lip that keeps the top when spun from falling off the base. The top in the image of Daruma is weighted to balance producing an overall circular motion. The top has a hand-fashioned tip that is part of the axle stem for spinning. The top is meant to stop just above the descriptive sections telling the player's fortune, (supreme good luck, partial luck, poor luck, holiday, no worry, no good, happiness). The piece is signed on the bottom.

Condition: Excellent condition means that the piece has no cracks or repairs with fine and original details consistent with the age and standards of collectible Vintage Japanese Toys. For those who want to start or expand their collection, Japanese toys and tops continue to be sought-after collectible highly valued artifacts.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Toys and Tops of many shapes and materials have been found throughout Japan and are among the most ancient toys known. In Japan, top playing was a boys’ game bound to specific events and seasons for which spinning tops were serious games, (fighting tops) and general spinning tops being an everyday toy is symbolic of housebound children in winter and on holidays. Besides games, toys have historically been used for prophecy.