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Genji

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Utagawa Kunisada II, Japanese, (1823–1880)
Murasaki Shikibu's Genji Playing Cards: Ch. 39, Yugiri, 1857
Ink on Paper
13 in. x 9 1/4 in. (330.2 mm x 234.95 mm)


Object Type: Print
Technique: Wood-block Printing
Period: Edo (Japan, 1615-1868)
Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Frederick S. Bailey
Accession Number: 54.1.55


Alternate Title: Murasaki Shikibu Genji Karuta: Ch. 39, Yugiri

Marks
On mat in pencil: Bai IV 83, "Genji at Ono." On verso, in pencil: Kunisada, Bailey Collection IV 83. Signed: Kochoro Kunisada ga. Censor's seal: Aratame, and date seal (Mi-juichi).

Medium
Colored ink on paper; woodblock print.

Object Description
Edo period color woodblock print with an image of a woman on a boat at night-time. Genji's second wife, the Third Princess, was seduced by Kashiwagi, who then died of grief for having offended Genji. Genji's son Yugiri, had been Kashiwagi's best friend, and felt obliged to care for Kashiwagi's widow. In this scene Yugiri returns home after visiting the widow, and as he sees geese descending into the mist, he thinks:

     No shadows now of them whom once I knew
     Only the autumn moon to guard the waters
translated by E. Seidensticker

Publisher
Publisher: Tsuta-ya Kichizo.

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