This pair of ohashi (chopsticks) is made of bone, likely deer antlers from the sacred deer in Nara. The chopsticks feature an image of a deer, a lantern, and a temple. They are thin, rectangular at the top, and taper to a point.
Chopsticks are short, usually tapered sticks used in pairs of equal length. They are the traditional eating utensils of China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam.
The deer (shika) in Nara are world famous. According to folklore, one of the four gods of the Kasuga Shrine appeared to followers riding a white deer; ever since then, Nara deer have been considered divine and sacred. Killing one of the Nara deer was punishable by death until 1637; they were stripped of their divine status and became designated National Treasures after World War II. Today, over 1,200 wild deer roam freely around the park in Nara. The Shika no Tsunokiri (Antler-Cutting Ceremony) has been held annually in Nara since 1671 to prevent the deer from hurting townspeople and one another. During the ceremony, a Shinto priest blesses the deer before their antlers are removed.