Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido: Station 42, Miya, c. 1833-1834
Ink on Paper
8 3/4 in. x 13 5/8 in. (222.25 mm x 346.08 mm)
On mat in pencil: Johnson collection XIX 42, 10/94.
Nishiki-e, horizontal oban; colored ink on paper.
Color woodblock print of an image of men holding ropes which are tied to running horses at a festival at the Atsuta Shrine.
Miya, the third largest station of Tokaido Road after Otsu and Fuchu, was also the town of the famous shrine of Atsuta, where one of the three treasures of the emperor, the sacred sword, is kept. Today miya is merged into the great city of Nagoya, but has remained as Atsuta ward, having taken the name of the shrine.
Among the festivals connected with this shrine was the Uma-oi (Chasing Horses) night festival. Bonfires light the night sky. In front of the torii gate, men dressed in bright costumes tie-dyed in red drive and chase two horses that appear to be galloping as fast as they can. But they do not run free-on each side, the men hold the lines of each horse's harness. Though the runners wield whips, if they make horses outrun them, they will fall and be dragged. And if this occurs, then the horse would slow down, dragging the men's weight. It seems that to have a successful chase, both horses and men had to cooperate.
(ref. “Hokusai and Hiroshige,” p.205 )
Hoeido (Takenouchi Magohachi) seal.
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