nodding tiger


15 December 1962, Japan
New Year Greeting, Tiger toy from Shimane

I received a comment on the previous feature – the animal does not look like a tiger. Well, it may not be, but what is it – it has a striped tail, though? This one from Japan, has a wider mouth but is not scary as this was a papier-mâché toy.

No tiger existed in the wild in Japan, but many tiger toys were made there to celebrate the zodiac year. And they nearly always had a head-nodding mechanism. A collection of 6 used stamps below, with those toys, I received on new years cards – now listed on eBay. Toys were made in Shimane, Osaka, Fukushima, Hakata, Fukui and Shizuoka – from everywhere in Japan.



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