Definition of netsuke
: a small and often intricately carved toggle (as of wood or ivory) used to fasten a small container to a kimono sash
netsuke was our Word of the Day on 07/20/2011. Hear the podcast!
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
Recent Examples of netsuke from the Web
Karen misspelled netsuke, a small sculptural object.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'netsuke'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Netsuke - the word in English can be pluralized as either netsuke or netsukes - were traditionally part of a man's dress, used to attach a medicine box, pipe, or tobacco pouch to the sash (called an obi) of a Japanese man's traditional kimono. Because the members of the newly risen merchant class, ranking below the samurai, were not permitted to wear jewelry, netsuke took the place of other personal adornment. With the end of the Tokugawa regime, leading to new customs of dress and the introduction of the cigarette shortly thereafter, netsuke became obsolete, though some were still carved to supply the demand of foreign residents and tourists.
Origin and Etymology of netsuke
First Known Use: 1876See Words from the same year
Learn More about netsuke
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about netsuke
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up netsuke? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).