Chaire (茶入) earliest history and original use unknown- ceramic as well as wood, lacquer; kinrinji (1200-1600’s)

Diagrams on this page are created by  Adam Sōmu Wojciński, they are lisenced CC Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International from

Names of the various parts of a chaire, by Adam Sōmu Wojciński


唐物 Shapes

Chaire shapes, by Adam Sōmu Wojciński



唐物 Chaire Shapes

  • Katatsuki 肩衝 “shouldered”
  • Kotsubo 小壷 “small jars”
    • bunrin “apple” 文琳
    • nasu “eggplant” 茄子
    • bunna “cross between nasu and bunrin” 文茄
  • marutsubo “round jar” 丸壷
  • tsurukubi “crane’s neck” 鶴首
    • zatsu “mixed” 雑 * enza “on a round cushion” 円座

      • anko-guchi “angler-fish mouth” 鮟子口
      • rotei-guchi (donkey hoof mouth) 驢蹄口
    • Daikai “big ocean” 大海

    • dai(nai)kai “inner sea” 内海
  • Though all in Japanese, this page includes a chart of many different chaire shapes.

    lids 蓋 turned ivory with tiny knobs on top; many varieties

    hikiya- turned hardwood case for protecting chaire; chaire accidentally fit into early natsume-shaped lacquer tea containers (not other way around)

    trays 盆 older pieces may have trays used with them to raise their status because really “good” pieces e.g. but not limited to karamono, should not go on the floor. Trays may be either karamono themselves or made in Japan. Once made into a set, the same one is always used, kept with the chaire in its box. There are square, round, flower / lobed (traditional), diamond, five sided (new, Japanese) shapes; decoration ranges from pure black lacquer, red, black and green Wakasa lacquer, carved black (tsui-koku 堆黒) and cinnabar (tsui-shu 堆朱), shell inlay, and colored lacquer designs. There are also lacquer, plain wood and leather trays. They should have their own boxes and hakogaki but stay with the chaire in its larger box.

    Wamono chaire 和物

    • Seto 瀬戸- karamono copies give way to greater self expression,
      • Rikyu Seto; Chuhkoh Meibutsu 中興名物, Oribe Seto, etc
    • Bizen 備前
    • Shigaraki  信楽
    • Takatori 高取
    • Agano 上野
    • Zeze 膳所
    • Tanba 丹波

    Natsume 棗, other lacquer thick tea containers Shinnuri 真塗, tamenuri 溜塗, ikkan 一貫張, oritame (“folded wood”) Oh, chu, sho, ippuku natsume; konomi’ed koicha containersÅF e.g. Kotaro, Oimatsu