A hagoita 羽子板 racket, for the Japanese badminton-like game hanetsuki 羽根突き, which is played without a net using a ball made of colourful bird feathers and the black seeds of the mukuroji 黒い玉 tree, from the Sapindales family. The game is especially popular with girls at New Year, as it is supposed to protect against misfortune. Beautifully decorated rackets have ornamental and collector value. They are often presented as a gift at the birth of a girl.
Hagoita rackets often depicit characters from the Kabuki 歌舞伎 theatre. Here, an actor is probably depicted in the role of a female warrior, probably the famous samurai Tomoe Gozen 巴 御前. (MV)