[A Collection of Ofuda 御札 Charms in Three Albums . Taisho 5 . The large album was compiled in Taisho 5 , according to the date in the preface. Slightly over 1200 ofuda, ranging in size from that of a grain of rice (there are 97 of these) up to 21.5 x 31 cm. However the majority are approximately 15 x 5.5. cm or thereabouts, with most having similar vertical proportions. All but three are laid down in the three albums. Two of the albums are matching double-sided accordion-fold albums with brown paper boards, 23 x 16 cm, each with a calligraphed title slip.  and  pages respectively, including pastedowns. One of them opens with a large sheet of text, 31.5 x 18 cm, laid down. These albums are made from printed books that have been repurposed: the printed texts (two long sheets, each printed on one side only and bound parallel to each other, back-to-back, between the boards) were detached and flipped over, leaving the blank side of each exposed, and then reattached to the boards. There is some ghosting of the printed text in areas that are not covered by ofuda and a few blank pages. The third album,  pp. including pastedowns, has worn cloth-covered boards, 27 x 20.5 cm, and an abraded title slip. It opens with two manuscript pages and there are a couple of notes within the album. Otherwise, it is full of charms pasted down on every page.
Ofuda 御札 are small amulets or charms available at shrines and temples in Japan for a small donation. Some of the paper amulets are tied to pillars or gates as an offering while others are meant to be kept. The amulets are meant as a protection, such as safety from fires, or for luck, as during pregnancy or exams. Some shrines are associated with specific protections and offer a particular Ofuda, often in a brocade envelope, for safekeeping. The large album is filled with colorful, beautifully illustrated charms, many with the town or place names; one of the smaller albums has mostly color while the other has all b+w. The small album with color also contains paper slips from businesses as well. These are a type of Senjafuda 千社札 (votive slip), that often shows the name of the worshiper and were pasted on temple ceilings during a visit, or are used by companies as business cards. The woodcuts use Edo period script and sometimes include an image that suggests the business.
Foxing to the album pages with foxing to some charms in the large album. For further interesting information on ofuda charms and other popular printed genres, we recommend Rebecca Salter's excellent book available from Univ. of Hawaii Press, Japanese Popular Prints: from Votive Slips to Playing Cards.
A wonderful older collection of an ephemeral genre which is by no means easy to find either in collection or singly.