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The genre is said to date to the Kamakura period, when Kōun (康運) (or, according to another theory, Kōen (康円), a busshi (a sculptor specializing in Buddhist images), began carving racial Buddhist implements in the manner that Chin Na-kei (or Chin Wa-kei) had introduced from Chinese carved lacquer of the Song Dynasty in China, which until modern times always built up the lacquer on a flat base surface before carving.
Kamakura-Bori was typically produced for the ruling class of feudal Japan, and often depicts religious/political figures. Kamakura-Bori was for all people who owned a home: almost all home-owners had some form of Kamakura-Bori crafts.
- 鎌倉彫 (Kamakura-bori) in the Japanese Wikipedia.