Watch Made of Japanese Armor Commemorates Legendary Warlord

In commemoration of the legendary Japanese feudal lord Date Masamune, Kyowa Seiko, a Japanese watchmaking company, wants to bring to market bespoke watches that honor him. The watches, which consist of traditional Japanese armor, are going to be wildly pricey. But what Masamune did to preserve his reputation as a—gnarly—historical figure also carried quite a cost.

A metallic watch made of Japanese armor set against a wood background and various traditional pieces of metalwork and woodwork.

Kyowa Seiko

SoraNews24 reported on Kyowa Seiko’s new, potential watch offering. Seiko has teamed up with designer Yusuke Taguchi and traditional Japanese craftsmanship company Tadayasu to make the new timepiece. That is, if the company can reach its $39,000 goal on Makuake, a Japanese crowdfunding site.

A close-up look at a watch made to look like Japanese armor, which is set against a black background.

Kyowa Seiko

If Seiko does reach its funding goals, the watch looks like it’ll be a real stunner. As SoraNews24 notes, the watch’s leather band and face look like armor from Japan’s Edo period; that is, the period spanning from 1603 and 1867 during which 300 regional daimyo, or powerful feudal lords, ruled over the country. The stainless steel case also has a smooth charcoal color to it. And a pattern of divots that look like slice marks from a blade.

A bespoke watch made of traditional Japanese armor next to its cloth carrying pouch and wood case.

Kyowa Seiko

The black, blue, and gold color scheme, along with the crescent moon second hand, take cues from Masamune’s own armor directly. The “regional strongman” wore armor with the same coloring. And the crescent second hand is a nod to the slim crescent moon that the warrior donned on the front of his helmet.

As for how Masamune earned his legendary daimyo status, it’s in large part due to his missing eye. Masamune had smallpox as a child, which robbed him of his sight in one eye. As legend has it, when a senior member of his clan told him that the dysfunctional eye could be a weakness in battle, Masamune plucked it out himself.

A look at Date Masamune's helmet, which has a very long, slim, horizontal ornament on its front.

Kyowa Seiko

Speaking of the hefty price of greatness, the Masamune watch will set buyers back $1,363. And that’s without shipping and handling. (Assuming Kyowa Seiko ships to wherever you are.) Perhaps interested parties who are more frugal can… keep an eye out for better deals.

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