MITUBACI celebrated its 10th anniversary on January 11.
Mi tu baci" is Italian for "kiss me. MITUBACI was named with the aim of creating a ring that, when worn, makes the wearer feel as if he or she is not in front of his or her significant other. In addition to one's own ring, in some regions overseas, there is a tradition of kissing the ring when greeting royalty or the Pope. The current Pope was in the news when he refused to kiss his ring to avoid infection before the coronavirus was still prevalent. The ring is the ring that more than one billion Catholics around the world want to get close to, and perhaps the ring that more people in the world want to kiss than any other ring.
In this issue, I will discuss the Pope's fisherman's ring.
What is the Pope's fisherman's ring?
The papal ring is a special ring made for each successive pope and is called the "fisherman's ring.
Since Peter, who is considered the first pope, was initially a fisherman, according to the Bible, there are several Christian items that are associated with fishermen (fishermen).
The fisherman's ring is one of the symbols of the Pope and is received at Mass when he is installed as Pope. As seen in the news, it is worn on the ring finger of the right hand.
Fisherman's ring design
The fisherman's ring is created with a new design each time the pope changes. Basically, it seems to be marked with the name of the pope who is the owner of the ring, as well as Peter, his small boat, and the fish he is catching. This time the design of the fisherman's ring is Peter holding the keys to heaven.
The ring of the former pope is destroyed. This seems to be due to the fact that the fisherman's ring was originally a seal/sealing ring (sealing stamp), a ring that has also been used for practical purposes. In order to prevent documents from being forged, it is unavoidable, but as a person who provides rings to customers, I feel a little sad that rings are intentionally destroyed.
As a sign of the pope, the fisherman's ring had a role as an official seal, especially around the 15th century, but nowadays it is not so often used as a seal. Perhaps for this reason, rings used as seals are called intaglio rings, which are engraved in such a way that they look beautiful when the ring design is reversed (depicted), but this ring does not seem to be designed in such a way.
What is the material of the fisherman's ring?
It seems that successive Popes had their rings made of gold, but the current Pope, Pope Francis, has gone with a ring made of silver and plated with gold, just like the silver ring from MITUBACI!
It does not seem very practical to use plated rings for sealing many times, as the plating seems to come off.
MITUBACI workshops also offer the option of yellow or pink gold plating.
Fisherman's ring manufacturing method
The fisherman's ring is a cast ring. Casting is a different process from the forging process available at MITUBACI.
In MITUBACI's workshop, craftsman Matsuura's "Sancha Zoo" animals are made by casting.
When creating jewelry by casting, a prototype is first made from wax.
Molds are made from prototypes created with wax. Molds are often made from resin. Metal is poured into the mold made of resin to make it.
I like the fact that when I produce rings (jewelry) with casts, I can also create detailed modeling.
Now is a difficult time to travel abroad, but I would like to visit the Vatican someday and see the real fisherman's ring.
Reference book: Vatican - The papacy is now, by Tomisako Goh, 2007