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Utagawa Kuniyoshi, Japanese, (1797–1861)
Seven Modern Komachi: Kayoi, 1849-1852
Ink on Paper
14 9/16 in. x 9 7/8 in. (369.89 mm x 250.83 mm)

Object Type: Print
Technique: Wood-block Printing
Period: Edo (Japan, 1615-1868)
Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Fred Marer
Accession Number: 93.3.126

Alternate Title: Imayo nana Komachi: Kayoi

On envelope in pencil: "Man in black, leaning on sedan chair." Signed: Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga. Artist's seal: Yoshi-kiri. Censor's seal: double censor's seal (Fuku and Muramatsu).

Colored ink on paper; woodblock print.

Object Description
Edo period color woodblock print with an image of a man with a cart.

While Komachi herself is not present, this print depicts an admirer waiting for her with a palanquin. It alludes to the story that the 9th c. courtier Shii no Shosho was so anxious to meet Komachi, he was willing to stand outside her house for 100 nights, to prove his sincerity. Unfortunately on the 100th day, he died, never having met her. This story of unsuccessful romance was popular in both noh and kabuki theaters during the 18-19th centuries. According to one play, Shii no shosho notched the palanquin support pole each night, and only these 99 cuts survived to testify to his passion. In another version, Shosho learned on the 100th day that his parent had died, and so he left Komachi's house to perform his filial duties.

See also: 93.3.125 and 44.1.1

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