Set of Sterling Silver Shamisen salt and pepper shakers - each is hallmarked 950 - and these were made from 1925 until 1960 and they were made in Japan. The shamisen or samisen, also sangen — both words mean "three strings" — is a three-stringed, Traditional Japanese musical instrument derived from the Chinese instrument sanxian. It is played with a plectrum called a bachi. The sterling silver set and wooden box are in great condition considering their age. Measures approximately 4 inches long. The bottoms of each salt and pepper have miniature sliding doors that open and close for filling.