Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳)

Print: Watanabe no Tsuna (渡邉綱) battles the demon Ibaraki at Modori Bridge from the series A Mirror of Warriors from our Country (Honchō musha kagami - 本朝武者鏡)

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Dates: 1855,created
Dimensions: 10.0 in,14.5 in,Overall dimensions
Medium: Japanese color woodblock print

Signed: Kuniyoshi ga (国芳画)
Publisher: Tsujiokaya Bunsuke
(Marks 548 - seal 21-228)
Artist's seal: kiri
Date seal: 4/1855
Censor's seal: aratame

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Physical description:

"The 10th-century hero Watanabe Tsun, one of the four retainers of Minamoto Yorimitsu (944-1021), is sent to destroy the female demon, Ibaraki, who haunts the Rashōmon, a city gate in Kyoto. He is seen here at the right grappling with the demon. He manages to cut off the creature's arm, which he conceals in a box. Later he is visitied by an old woman who introduces herself as his former nurse. After talking about his exploits, she persuades him to show her the arm. As soon as he opens the box, she seizes the arm, assumes the form of a demon and flies away.

Prints from the late period of Kuniyoshi's oeuvre, like this one, are often characterised by a rather 'stiff' drawing style."

Quoted from: Heroes and Ghosts: Japanese Prints by Kuniyoshi 1797-1861 by Robert Schaap, p. 114.


This print was originally issued by the publishers Izumiya Ichibei circa 1845.