Antique Japanese Senior Naval Officer’s Cocked Hat

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Antique Japanese Senior Naval Officer’s Cocked Hat

HAT & TIN CASE Ca 1895
Presented is a cocked hat and its tin
carrying case of a Japanese naval officer of high rank. The cover is also known as a fore and aft or bicorn hat . Based on
the number of gold and silver bullion strands on its left side we conclude it is from an officer with the rank of Taisa or a
naval captain. As a point of interest, the Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) and the Imperial Navy (IJN) have the same
rank titles. For example, the Japanese word Taisho in the army is for a general officer and in the Navy means an
admiral. In this instance, the word Taisa is for a Navy captain or an Army colonel.
This hat is made of Beaver felt bound with gold bullion
accouterments that are mounted above a large black cockade of embroidery. On each end is a gold tassel. The hat has a
ribbed silk band of black embroidery along its upper edge and three coils of bullion. The outer loop is gold,
then silver and the inner loop is twisted gold which is finished by a domed gilt brass Mum button with anchor at
the bottom. The interior of the hat features a tan hat band and red liner. Considering its age, it is in excellent

Tin carrying case
THE COCKED HAT: These types of hats date back to the 1700’s and were
used by all branches of the world military forces. They were worn by officers when in full dress uniforms commonly
refereed to as a “fore and aft” hat or bicorn. During the 1700’s the hat was worn parallel to the shoulders, but in the 1800’s
was modified to be worn with the points to the front and back. Wearing of the Cocked Hat was discontinued on 12 October 1940
in the U.S. Navy which would have been about the time other navies discontinued their use.DATE OF MAKE:We have seen numerous examples of this style
Japanese cover that were housed in a rectangular carrying case with recognizable hardware that date from 1914 to the
1939. This is the only Japanese one we’ve seen with a tin carrying case though there are many examples of this type case being
used by other countries which date well before the Turn of the 20th Century. Hence, we conservatively estimate this example
to be Ca 1895 or around the time of the Sino-Japanese War of 1894-95 or even the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05.The tin
carrying case
COCKED HAT Dimensions: 15 1/4″ L x  5 1/2″ W x 6
1/2″ H    Estimated size 7 1/2“
CONDITION: There is a small crush on the left forward edge
which may be due to how the owner handled the hat on putting it on and taking it off. The edge of the black band is worn from
chafe.THE CASE: The tin case has some dents and paint loss. The
catch for the latch is broken off, but the case is still serviceable. There is an unnamed brass tag on the front. Size: 19″ L x 7 1/2″ W x 8 1/4″ HThis relic is of exceptional
quality and rarity and belongs in a collection of Naval artifacts

Inside of tin case

Lower ranking officer’s cover and later style case
This interesting relic of th pre WW II Imperial Japanese Navy is a perfect gift, presentation
piece or for a collection of militaria

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