Torikabuto (鳥兜)

A torikabuto is a head costume used in performances of gagaku, a type of Japanese traditional music and dance. Besides gagaku, they are also used in traditional arts performed at shrines and temples.

It is thought to have taken its shape from the phoenix and it is long like a cock's comb and has a neck plate attached to the back to protect the neck.

Although it is called a kabuto (helmet) it is made from gorgeous brocade and baudekin and the colors vary subtly among the different types of gagaku.

As they look exquisite, they are often used as patterns in Japanese clothes, particularly the torikabuto used in Seigaiha (a play of gagaku). In particular, patterns incorporating fall leaves, drums and torikabuto are called Momiji no Ga (the autumn excursion) patterns and are found on uchikake (long outer robe).

[Original Japanese]