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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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A triptych of the Ink Wars, Bokusen no zu. Evidently a court pastime during the Nara period (710-794) was to stage ink battles. Courtiers are involved in throwing ink and daubing each other with brushes. Published by San, 1843.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi giga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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A night scene illuminated by a band of light from a hand-lantern. Shows Ushiwaka-maru (Yoshitsune) battling with the outlaw priest Kumasada Chohan and his band of thieves who were attempting to rob the inn where Yoshitsune was staying. Published by Ibaya Sensaburo, c. 1839-41. A fine design.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Toyohara CHIKANOBU (1838-1912)



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O’ai-no-kata of Okazaki dispatches a man who spied on her while taking a bath. From a set of 50 prints Azuma nishiki chuya kurabe, “Edo Embroidery Pictures.” The series published by Kobayashi Tetsujiro, 1886.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Yoshu Chikanobu hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Gempei Yashima o-kassen, the great battle of Yashima in 1184. Shows Yoshitsune’s famous “eight-boat leap” (centre), Noritsune (left), and Benkei on the large boat (right). Published by Kawaguchiya Uhei, c. 1839-41.

 

Very good impression and colour. Edge repair top left sheet, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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The battle of Fujikawa from a set of triptychs Toyotomi Shoshinroku published by Yorozumago, c 1869. The set relates Hideyoshi’s (1537-1598) exploits. From humble origins he became the second unifier of Japan who, after 100 years of war, brought stability and peace.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size with extra paper all around. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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The warrior Ritchitaisai Genshoji in a boat attacked by grappling-hooks thrown by his adversaries. A design from the set Tsuzoku Suikoden goketsu hyaku-hachi-nin no hitori, “The Hundred and Eight Heroes of the Popular Suikoden, One by One.” Based on the Chinese novel Shui Hu Zhuan, attributed to Shi’Nai’an, which tells of a band of 108 brigands who operated from Liangshan Marsh. Published by Kagaya Kichiyemon, 1827-30. Robinson S2.53.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size (unusual as these prints are overlarge obans and often trimmed). Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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The ghost of Genta Yoshihira, having been executed by Taira no Kiyomori, springs into the air causing a thunderstorm and exacting revenge. The best design from Shingata sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts.” Published 1889 by Sasaki.

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition. The first edition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

Status: Available

 

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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Shoki appearing in the Chinese emperor Ming Huang’s dream and cleansing him of a fever demon. From the set Shinkei sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts.” The set published by Sasaki Toyokichi, 1889 – 1892 (this being 1890).

 

Very fine first edition, fine colour and condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

Status: Available

 

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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A triptych: Shirazunoyabu yawata no jikkai. Shows Otake Taro Mitsukuni, the old servant of Takiyasha, defying the apparitions that haunted her in the ruins of her old home. This is the subject of Kuniyoshi’s famous triptych of the skeleton. Published by Kobayashi, 1881.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minor creasing and edge soil, otherwise very good condition. Signed Oju Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Shirai TOSHINOBU II (1866-1903)



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A triptych showing Nitta no Shiro Tadatsune encountering the Goddess of Mount Fuji and her dragon in a cave on Mt. Fuji. (Bodhisattva Kannon [Buddhist]; spirit of Mt. Fuji [Shinto].) Tadatsune’s comrades were afraid to enter the cave and the Goddess commends him on his bravery. Published by Inoue Mohei, 1885. A little known pupil of Yoshitoshi who recognised him as a pupil and named him Toshinobu, which he kept until he died. A wonderful design.

 

Fine impression and colour. Minor pin holes at corners and slight centre folds, but otherwise very good condition. Signed Utagawa Kuniume aratame Shusai Kuni… (?) changing his name to a Kuni but unread. This must have been a short-lived change as the name is not recorded.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1865)



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A triptych showing the great sumo wrestling match between Momotaro and Kaidomaru, the two youths of prodigious strength. Momotaro, on the right, is identified by the peaches on his garment. (He was known as “The Peach Boy.”) A pheasant is umpiring the match (a reference to the companions Momotaro makes early in his career: a monkey, dog and pheasant). While a bear officiates on Kaidomaru’s side (also a reference to the animals he befriends in the forest). Published by Yamaguchiya Tobei, c. 1842-6. Extremely rare.

 

Very good impression. Some slight movement of the colours, otherwise very good. Very good condition: full size. Signed Kochoro Kunisada ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Toyohara CHIKANOBU (1838-1912)



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Kusunoki Masatsura killing the magical tanuki from a set of 50 prints Azuma nishiki chuya kurabe, “Edo Embroidery Pictures.” The set published by Kobayashi Tetsujiro, 1886.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Yoshu Chikanobu hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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Kobayakawa Takakage debating with the tengu on mount Hiko from Shinkei sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-six Ghosts.”The set published by Sasaki Toyokichi, 1889-1892 (this being 1892).

 

Very fine first edition. Fine colour and condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

Status: Available

 

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Ichieisai YOSHITSUYA (1822-1866)



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The young Kintaro, aka, Kintoki, Sakata Kaidomaru. He is shown fighting a giant carp in a waterfall from a series: Honcho musha kagami, Kintaro, “ Mirror of Warriors of Our Country, Kintaro.” This child of superhuman strength is often depicted with the animals living on Ashigara mountain where he honed his fighting skills and was spotted by Minamoto Yorimitsu (944-1021), under whom he went on to serve.Yoshitsuya was a pupil of Kuniyoshi and this print can be compared to a famous design by Kuniyoshi of the same subject published in 1836. Published by Tsujiokaya Bunsuke, 7/1856.

 

Very good impression and colour. Slight creasing, otherwise good condition. Signed Ichieisai Yoshitsuya ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Shows Abe no Hirafu, a governor of Koshi, killing a giant bear in heavy snow. From a set: Dai Nippon meisho kagami, “Mirror of Famous Leaders of Great Japan.” Published by Funazu Chujiro, 1880.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Minamoto no Ushiwakamura battling with Kumasaka Chohan. From the fine set Yoshitoshi mushaburui, “Yoshitoshi’s Courageous Warriors.” Published by Kobayashi, 1883-1886 (this being 1883).

 

Fine impression and colour. Light toning, otherwise fine condition. This is the first edition. There are a number of later states and the set was republished by Tsunajima in 1886.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Tamiya Boutaro from a set Kokoku nijushiko, “The Twenty-four Accomplishments in Imperial Japan.” Shows the spirit of the tengu helping Tamiya Boutaro Munechika avenge his father’s death. The set published by Tsuda Genshichi 1881-87 (this being 1881).

 

Fine impression: This is the first edition. It was republished by Matsuki Heikichi with altered signatures and other changes and inferior printing. Fine colour and condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Uesugi no Terutora (Kenshin) riding into battle. One of the best designs from a fine set: Yoshitoshi musha burui, “Yoshitoshi’s Courageous Warriors” published by Kobayashi Tetsujiro, 1883. This is the first edition with two red seals left margin, complete date with day, month and year in left margin and three-colour cartouche. Subsequent editions were printed with only two-colour cartouche and then just one colour. It was also reprinted by Tsunajima Kamekichi in 1886.


Fine impression and colour. Slight browning, otherwise very good condition. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.


Status: Available

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Oho ( Wang P’ou ) visiting his mother’s tomb to comfort her during a thunderstorm. Shows peasants fleeing the zigzag lightning bolts. From a set of fourteen prints: Nijushi-ko doji kagami, “Mirror of the Twenty-Four Paragons of Filial Piety.” Published by Wakasa-ya Yoichi, c 1840. Each print shows an example of a child’s exemplary behaviour in looking after their aged parents There is a strong western influence in this set. Robinson S13.14.


Very good impression and colour. Slight centre fold, otherwise good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.



Status: Available

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839 – 1892)




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Watanabe no Tsuna on horseback in the rain. One of the finest designs from Wakan hyaku monogatari. Published by Daikin, 1865/2.


Fine impression and colour. Minor wormage otherwise very good condition. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi ga.



Status: Available

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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An extremely rare diptych, Shoki-san jaki ni sokko, “Shoki-San, Quick-Acting Medicine to Remove Evil Spirits.” Images of Shoki were used to ward off evil spirits and illness, especially during the Boys’ Festival. Published 1858 by Enshuya Hikobei. Provenance: Purchased from me in 1994.


Extremely fine impression. Fine colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi fude with Yutaka seal.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A triptych Akazawa-yama o-sumo showing the most famous sumo match in Japanese history between Kawazu Saburo Sukeyasu and Matano Goro Kagehisa at Akazawa mountain. Also famous as Kawazu used a new sumo hold wrapping a foot around his opponent’s leg and encircling the neck with one arm, a manoeuvre that became known as the Kawazu hold. The event took place in 1176 before Shogun Minamoto Yoritomo where Kawazu defeats the popular bully Matano. Subsequently Kawazu was murdered, quite unrelated to the bout. His sons swear revenge and their story becomes the Soga monogatari. Kawazu is shown here throwing Matano to the ground, the referee to the left. Published 1858 by Maruya Kyushiro. Robinson T353. Provenance: Purchased from me in 1994.


Superb impression and colour. One small thinned area, otherwise very fine condition. Probably the finest impression extant of this famous design. Signed Kuniyoshi ga and Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A triptych showing the famous archer Minamoto no Yorimasa preparing to shoot the monster Nue on the roof of the Shishinden Palace. The story relates how in 1153 the sixteen year old Emperor Konoe was having difficulty sleeping due to the shrieks and scratchings emanating from the palace roof. Guards informed him that a black cloud descended there every night. Yorimasa was called upon to investigate and he brought down the beast – a composite creature, part monkey, badger, tiger, dragon and snake which was duly despatched by his retainer Hironao no Hayata (Tadazumi no Hayata). Subsequently Konoe sleeps soundly and rewards Yorimasa with a fine sword and a court beauty Yorimasa loves. An exceptional design published 1842-3 by Yamashiroya Shinroku. Robinson T112. Provenance: Purchased from me in 1994.


Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Kwaido Maru (Kintoki) seizes Raijin, the Thunder God, with one hand while holding his thunder drums with the other. A thunderbolt falls to earth causing flashes of lightning. A fine and rare set: Honcho musha kagami, “Mirror of Warriors of our Country.” The set published by Tsujioka-ya Bunsuke, 1855. Robinson S87.6.


Fine impression. Slightly trimmed, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Hironao no Hayata (Tadazumi no Hayata), Yorimasa’s retainer (see the triptych by Kuniyoshi of the same subject on this update), grappling with the composite beast Nue on the roof of the Shishinden Palace. Forked lightning bounces around him. One of the best designs from Honcho Suikoden goyu happyaku-nin no hitori, “Eight Hundred Heroes of our Country’s Suikoden, One by One.” Published by Kagaya Kichiemon, 1830-31.


Very good impression and colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Aigo Gozayemon Hisamitsu (Haigo Gozaemon Hisamitsu) mounted and armoured (less helmet) in battle levelling his long spear. He was a retainer of the Oda family and served under Shibata Katsuiye. From the set Taiheiki yeiyuden, “Heroic Stories of the Taiheiki. A history of the wars of the loyalist Nitta and Kusunoki families against the Ashikaga war-lords during the second quarter of the fourteenth century. But in fact the subject of this set of fifty prints (this design numbered 43) is the civil war of the late 16th century. Censorship restrictions imposed in the 1840s prevented publishers from illustrating historical subjects from the Tensho era 1573-92 onwards, so the publishers circumvented this by slightly altering the names of the historical figures. Published 1848-9 by Yamamoto-ya Heikichi. Robinson S62.1. One of the best designs from the set.


Very fine impression. Fine colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Negoro- no Komizucha (Negoro-no Komizucha) dressed as a warrior-monk fighting with a long nail-studded club (a tetsubo) and a broken naginata. Swords and arrows fly about him.. From the set Taiheiki yeiyuden, “Heroic Stories of the Taiheiki. A history of the wars of the loyalist Nitta and Kusunoki families against the Ashikaga war-lords during the second quarter of the fourteenth century. But in fact the subject of this set of fifty prints (this design numbered 26) is the civil war of the late 16th century. Censorship restrictions imposed in the 1840s prevented publishers from illustrating historical subjects from the Tensho era 1573-92 onwards, so the publishers circumvented this by slightly altering the names of the historical figures. Published 1848-9 by Yamamoto-ya Heikichi. Robinson S62.26. One of the best designs from the set.


Fine impression and colour. Very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Kobayashi KIYOCHIKA (1847-1915)




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Shows Captain Kani Ichita who, because he was suffering from dysentery, broke down 100 yards from the assault on Two Dragon Hill at the siege of Port Arthur in the Russo-Japanese war ( 1/8/1904-2/1/1905 ). Not able to forgive his weakness, he went back to the same spot a week later and commited seppuku. From a set Rikukaigunjin komei kagami, “Mirror of Army and Navy Heroes.” Published by Inoue Kichijiro, 2/1895. For whatever reason, a rare set. Fine design.


Fine impression and colour. Signs of mounting au verso, otherwise fine condition. Signed Kiyochika.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Fukishima Masamori (Fukushima Masanori) in armour struggling with three assailants. He was the son of a cooper in the province of Owari. From the set Taiheiki yeiyuden, “Heroic Stories of the Taiheiki. A history of the wars of the loyalist Nitta and Kusunoki families against the Ashikaga war-lords during the second quarter of the fourteenth century. But in fact the subject of this set of fifty prints (this design numbered 15) is the civil war of the late 16th century. Censorship restrictions imposed in the 1840s prevented publishers from illustrating historical subjects from the Tensho era 1573-92 onwards, so the publishers circumvented this by slightly altering the names of the historical figures. Published 1848-9 by Yamamoto-ya Heikichi. Robinson S62.9. One of the best designs from the set.


Fine impression and colour. Small binding holes, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.Published 1848-9 by Yamamoto-ya Heikichi. Robinson S62.2. One of the best designs from the set.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Kobayashi KIYOCHIKA (1847-1915)




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Lieutenant Mitsutani on horseback in swirling smoke. From a set Rikukaigunjin komei kagami, “Mirror of Army and Navy Heroes.” Published by Inoue Kichijiro 1895. I have been unable to get any information on this hero. For whatever reason, a rare set. Fine design.


Fine impression and colour. Signs of mounting au verso, otherwise fine condition. Signed Kiyochika.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Akashi Ridayu Hidemoto (Akashi Gidayu Tadamasu) with a peasants’ straw raincoat over his armour and armed with a hoe. On one occasion, together with Shioren Sajima, he commanded a force of men dressed as farmerts. From the set Taiheiki yeiyuden, “Heroic Stories of the Taiheiki. A history of the wars of the loyalist Nitta and Kusunoki families against the Ashikaga war-lords during the second quarter of the fourteenth century. But in fact the subject of this set of fifty prints (this design numbered 34) is the civil war of the late 16th century. Censorship restrictions imposed in the 1840s prevented publishers from illustrating historical subjects from the Tensho era 1573-92 onwards, so the publishers circumvented this by slightly altering the names of the historical figures. Published 1848-9 by Yamamoto-ya Heikichi. Robinson S62.2. One of the best designs from the set.


Very fine impression, colour, and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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The demon Ibaraki of Rashomon ( a gate south of the Imperial Palace in Kyoto ) visits Watanabe no Tsuna disguised as an old woman to retrieve its severed arm. This famous story relates how Watanabe cut off the arm after camping out at the gate to rid the neighbourhood of the beast. ( See below on this website for Yoshitoshi’s vertical diptych of the same subject. ) From Yoshitoshi manga, “Sketches by Yoshitoshi” from a fine set of seven diptychs. Published by Kobayashi 1885-86 ( this being 1885 ).

 

Very fine impression of the first edition. Fine colour. Fine condition apart from one minor mark. As originally published with no backing paper, with the margins completely untrimmed ( often cut in this set ), and plenty of space for joining. Signed Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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The best design from the set Tsuki hyakushi, the “Hundred Phases of the Moon”. The set published between 1885 and 1892 ( this being 1886 ) by Akiyama Buemon. Benkei against a full moon. In 1185 Yoshitsune attacked by his half-brother Minamoto no Yoritomo, was forced to flee to northern Japan by ship. Sailing along the Inland Sea off the coast of Harima Province not far from Kyoto, the ship was struck by a storm in Daimotsu Bay caused by the vengeful ghosts of the Taira warriors Yoshitsune and his men had slain. Benkei pacified the spirits in the prow of the boat by holding up his string of prayer beads.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. (A good guide to the quality of the impression is to look at the outline of Benkei’s face: This fine line started to break down early on.) An impression that has not been in an album: Full margins with very extensive mica. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Hohodemi Mikoto battling a giant bream to regain the magic fish hook. The best design from a fine chuban set Biyu Suikoden published by Omiya Kyujiro, 1866/7 (this being 1867). He eventually marries the Sea God’s daughter Princess Toyotama. There is a later edition with the publisher’s name removed.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Signed Kaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Takagi Umanosuke, a seven foot tall Jujutsu master, holding a trial of courage with a giant ghost in an ancient temple. He also mastered the arts of Bojutsu (staff), Sojutsu (spear), and Naginarajutsu (halberd). One of the best designs from a fine chuban set Biyu Suikoden published by Omiya Kyujiro, 1866/7 (this being 1866). There is a later edition with the publisher’s name removed.

 

Very good impression and colour.One small mark, otherwise good condition. Signed Kaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Inuzaka Keno Tanetomo struggling with four adversaries from Kyokutei-o seicho Hakkenshi zui-ichi, “The One and Only Eight Dog History of Old Kyokutei [Bakin], Best of Refined Authors.” The set of eight prints form diptychs and are based on Bakin’s (1767-1848) famous novel Satomi Hakkenden, “Eight Dogs of the Satomi Clan.” Robinson S5.7.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Roba kiwan o mochisaru zu, the best design from Shinkei sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts.” The set published by Sasaki Toyokichi, 1889. The well-known story relates how Watanabe no Tsuna cuts off the arm of the demon Ibaraki near the Rashomon Gate in Kyoto in 976. Watanabe locks the arm in a box. Subsequently he is visited by his wet-nurse who asks to see the arm, whereupon she seizes it and flies off revealing her true guise as that of the demon. The story was made into a no play, Ibaraki, and later a kabuki play.

 

Very fine first edition, fine colour and condition. Full size with the publishing details intact on left margin. The second edition (with only two-colour cartouche) is shown on the front cover of The Age of Yoshitoshi, The Rijksmuseum, 1990 and no. 47, p. 40. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Fushimi ojishin Momoyama goten no zu. Shows Kato Kiyomasa protecting Toyotomi Hideyoshi during the earthquake which destroyed the Fushimi castle two years after it was completed in 1594. Published by Fukase, 1885.

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition with extra paper around. Signed Oju Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichieisai YOSHITSUYA (1822-1866)




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Raiko and his four retainers: from left to right, Sakata no Kintoki, Usui no Sadamitsu, Watanabe no Tsuna and Urabe no Suyetake on Oyeyama, “Devil’s Mountain.” Shows Raiko having just decapitated the giant head of the demon Shuten-doji which then descended upon his helmet. Unidentified publisher, 1858.

 

Fine impression. Very good colour and condition. Signed Ichieisai Yoshitsuya ga

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Daininbo Umegae o satsugai no zu, “Picture of the Priest Dainin Killing the Girl Umegae from the set Shinsen azuma nishiki-e, “New Selection of Eastern Brocade Pictures.” The set was based on episodes from kabuki drama although set in naturalistic surroundings. Published by Tsunashima Kamekichi between 1885-89 (this being 1886).

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition. Full, untrimmed yellow borders. Two-colour cartouche: Supposedly the first edition has three-colour cartouche but this impression could not be better, so presumably the printer had a forgetful day. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

Status: Sold

 

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