The senninbari, thousand stitch sash, was a talisman presented to a soldier leaving town joining the army or going to the front. A white cotton sash with thousand french nut stitches with red thread sticked by close female relatives, friends and strangers. One knot was sewn by different woman except a woman born in the Year of the Tiger tiger who could add as many stitches as her own age. It was thought to protect the wearer from the hazards of battle. This example, which belonged to a Imperal Army soldier Koyama Eiroku, was presented to him when he was leaving for battle. The belt is printed with words ..... meaning "long-lasting good luck in battle" to wish for the soldier's safe return. The belt also contains two coins with holes and an amulet sewn in. One of the coins is go-sen (5 sen) and the other is jussen (10 sen). Five is bigger than four (shi) which sounds the same as "death". Therefore go-sen will overcome shi sen, the "death line." The same applies to jussen;10 is bigger than 9 (ku) which sounds the same as "hardship". Therefore the jussen will protect the soldier from encountering kusen, the "hard battle".
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