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Can anyone tell me what this Japanese writing says?

Posted By: Brett
Posted Date: May 03, 2017 (08:22 PM)

I found out that this is Chinese. I showed a picture of this piece to a server while at lunch at a Sushi restaurant. He told me that it was Chinese and that all he could make out was the word water. So, afterwards I stopped by a local Chinese restaurant and the woman said it was Chinese, but she wasn't able to translate from Chinese to English, she wasn't sure of the words the Chinese characters translated to. I tried to do some of my own translations. I wrote the characters down on paper and got some rough translations using google translation via pictures of my written characters, but its hard to put together what they mean in conjunction. I figure the chop is the bit with the artists name, but that is completely foreign to me. Here's what I got from my research.

水 - Water
木- Wood (not sure about this one, also thought it looked close to the symbols for forest, timber, but not an exact match)
堂 - hall, court, large room
清 - Clear, clean, distinct, quiet
山 - mountain
刀 - knife

Based off these translations I think 2 possibilities:

1. Is that it is explaining what it is ie. a device that holds water to clean something like a brush.

2. Thats its a poem or descriptive sentence like "The (blank) hall on the quiet mountain in Jishan? I say Jishan because for a brief moment the translator said this word when it combined 2 of the characters. Although, it may have just been reaching. I know that Chinese is very complicated and it's all about the order of symbols used that make words or completely different sentences from the use of the individual word. When I combine the last 3 characters (清山刀) in the translator together it gives me Qing Shan knife.

Am I on to anything with this or am I just shooting blanks?
I honestly find both Chinese and Japanese to be very interesting languages and cultures and I would definitely like to learn more about them.

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