Nutcracker Museum

Bavarian Leavenworth, Washington

Introduction to Special Nutcrackers
"Japanese Samurai"

The original meaning of Samurai is "Those who serve in close attendance with the nobility". The Samurai began in the 12th century as guards for the rulers, but became so strong that they actually dominated the Japanese and became the first military dictatorship until the mid-19th century. The Samurai code of honor, discipline and morality has continued to be much of the code of Japanese society.
   
This Samurai nutcracker is carved of an unknown extremely hard wood, such as ebony or lignum vitae, and ivory. The figure is dressed in the style of the times, in a kimono with a wide shouldered mantle over it which leaves the arms free.
   
Decorative ivory medallions and bamboo leaves are imbedded in the wood of the kimono. There are 13 ivory medallions with one on the chest area as a single design. The others are designed in pairs with the ones on the left matching the ones on the right
   
The back view shows that this is a screw type nutcracker. His head shows the typical hair dress of the time. This nutcracker is 8' tall and will accommodate a small walnut. The pleats in the back of the kimono match the pleats in the front of the garment.
   
  The hands of the Samurai are carved of ivory and he is holding his sword unsheathed. The ancient Japanese swords had straight blades, but around 700 AD the curved blade began to be used, thus the curve in the Samurai sword.
   
The feet are carved of ivory and the soles of the sandals are textured. A medallion on the bottom of the carving gives the date and place: Italy 1897. Note the bamboo leaves of ivory imbedded in the wood. 

 


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Federal ID #91-2143303

A Non-Profit 501(c)3 Organization

 

Contact Us

735 Front Street
P.O. Box 2212
Leavenworth, WA 98826

(509) 548-4573

MUSEUM HOURS
Open 7 Days a Week
1:00PM - 5:00PM

Nutcracker Museum Mission Statement:

"To foster and encourage the interest of the general public of the importance of nuts in the diets of humans throughout history and in the evolution of the nutcracker. No other tool or collectible has shown such a wide diversity of material and design as the implements used to crack the hard shell of a nut"

Museum Admission:

Adults  - $5.00  (Ages 17 - 64yrs)
Seniors - $3.50  (Age 65yrs +)
Youth   - $2.00  (Ages 6 - 16yrs)
Child    - FREE   (Ages 0 - 5yrs)
Military & Families - FREE