Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳)

Print: Sugawara no Michizane (菅原道真) at Tenmangū Shrine

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Dates: circa 1840,created
Dimensions: 9.0 in,13.0 in,Overall dimensions
Medium: Japanese color woodblock print

Signed: Ichiyūsai Kuniyoshi ga
Publisher: Aritaya Seiemon
(Marks 014 - seal 22-064)
Censor's seal: kiwame

Related links: Kuniyoshi project (two examples near the bottom);

Physical description:

Kakemono-e of Sugawara no Michizane seated on a dais wearing formal Heian Court robes and holding a scepter at Tenmangu Shrine. Below him two palace guards are seated behind a pair of stone Shi-shi lion-dogs.

ex B. W. Robinson collection S95c.6


Sugiwara no Michizane, aka Kan Shōjō, is wearing a robe decorated with stylized plum blossoms.

In many of the prints showing Sugawara no Michizane in this guise, whether seated or standing, there is a flowering plum tree behind him.


There are a number of other vertical compositions with basically the same layout. In the Library of Congress are a couple of them by anonymous artists and there is also an Eisen composition with the figure seated regally at the top, two noble figures below that and colorful guardian lions at the bottom.

There is a print by Harunobu from the early 1760s in the Ainsworth Collection in Oberlin, Ohio showing Sugawara no Michizane seated on a dais above two court attendants. However, this one does not have the shi-shi statuettes below.