Antique Japanese ORNATELY CARVED Carpenters Sumitsubo Chalk Line Ink Pot 15th C


Here we have an early Antique, ''ORNATELY CARVED' Carpenter's 'Sumitsubo' INK POT - 'Chalk Line'. Sumitsubo translates to “ink pot”. The inkpot has been a common tool in many Asian countries since ancient times. Traditionally, the carpenter would make the sumitsubo himself, taking pleasure in carving his favorite designs onto the inkpot. A thin line travels through holes at each end of a “pond” filled with absorbent silk or cotton waste soaked with ink, and then spools around a wheel or reel. As the line is let out it soaks up ink from the ‘pond’. Once it is stretched, the line is then ‘snapped’ to mark the surface for cutting, etc.

This piece is missing the line. It is hand carved and we believe it comes from the 15th or16th century or possibly earlier when we looked at many examples. It is old. It does have cracks to the wood. Please look over all pictures. A great piece of history!!

It is 7 3/8" long x 3 1/8" tall x 2 5/8" wide to handle

Fully insured.

Shipping from United States

Processing time

1-2 business days

Customs and import taxes

Buyers are responsible for any customs and import taxes that may apply. I'm not responsible for delays due to customs.

Payment Options

Secure options
  • Accepts Etsy gift cards

Returns & Exchanges

I gladly accept returns

Just contact me within: 14 days of delivery

Ship items back to me within: 21 days of delivery

I don't accept exchanges or cancellations

But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.

The following items can't be returned or exchanged

Because of the nature of these items, unless they arrive damaged or defective, I can't accept returns for:

  • Custom or personalized orders
  • Perishable products (like food or flowers)
  • Digital downloads
  • Intimate items (for health/hygiene reasons)

Conditions of return

Buyers are responsible for return shipping costs. If the item is not returned in its original condition, the buyer is responsible for any loss in value.

Legal imprint