The Garden Guide

Book: Landscape Gardening in Japan, 1912
Chapter: Chapter 3. Garden Lanterns

Patination of stone lanterns

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Stone Lanterns are chiefly valued in proportion to their age, and various devices are employed for imparting an antiquated appearance to new specimens. Those rendered weather-worn by long exposure to the elements are mostly brought from old country temples and mountain shrines, and are in special demand. A fictitious age is given to new Lanterns by attaching, with a gummy solution, patches of green moss, and by fixing to them decayed leaves by means of bird-lime, or by smearing them with the slime of snails; after either of which processes they are kept in the shade and frequently wetted. The result of these methods is to produce on the stone a white lichen and other fungous growths.