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Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳)

Print: Lu Zhishen, the Tattooed Monk - (Kaoshō Rochishin shomei Rotatsu - 花和尚魯知深初名魯達) from the series One Hundred and Eight Heroes of the Popular Shuihuzhuan (Tsūzoku Suikoden gōketsu hyakuhachinin no hitori - 通俗水滸伝豪傑百八人之一個) 

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Dates: circa 1827 - 1829,created
Dimensions: 10.0 in,14.75 in,Overall dimensions
Medium: Japanese color woodblock print
Inscription:

Signed: Ichiyūsai Kuniyoshi ga
一勇斎国芳画
Publisher: Kagaya Kichiemon
(Marks 195 - seal 22-025)
Censor's seal: kiwame

Related links: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; British Museum; Hagi Uragami Museum of Art; Tokyo National Museum; Lyon Collection - Yoshiharu print of this heroic figure;Lyon Collection - Shi Jin, the Nine Dragons print;

Physical description:

Lu Da, the original name of Lu Zhishen, first appears in Chapter 3 (p. 46) of the Outlaws of the Marsh. Shi Jin, Nine Dragons, - see Lyon Collection #1306 - is in search of his arms master, when he entered a small tea-house to make inquiries. He is told that the major to the local command walked in:

While the waiter was talking, a big fellow who looked like an army officer strode in. His head was bound in a bandanna with figured swastikas, buckled in the back with twisted gold rings from Taiyuan. A raven-black plaited sash bound his parrot-green warrior's gown at the waist. On his feet were yellow boots embossed with four welts of brown leather in hawk talon design. He had large ears, a straight nose and a broad mouth. A full beard framed his round face. He was six feet tall and had a girth of ten spans.

When the new-comer had taken a seat, the waiter said to Shi Jin: "That's the major. You can ask him about Wang Jin. He knows all the arms instructors."

Shi Jin rose quickly and bowed. "May I invite you to some tea, sir? Please join me."

The officer saw that Shi Jin was a big stalwart fellow who seemed a man of valor. He walked over and returned his greeting. Then the two sat down together.

"May I be so bold as to ask your name, sir?" Shi Jin queeried.

"I'm called Lu Da. I'm a major in this garrison. And who are you brother?

[More to be added later.]

****

In Chapter 8 Kaoshō Rochishin comes upon two corrupt guards and is intent on intimidating them. He threatens to separate their heads from their bodies. To prove that he can do this "[Kaoshō Rochishin] lifted up his staff and struck a pine tree a blow two inches deep, and the tree fell cleanly over, unsplintered. He shouted, 'You two accursed, if you have evil plans in your hearts your head shall be cut off like this tree!' "

Quoted from: All Men are Brothers by Pearl Buck, p. 85.

****

Illustrated in:

1) In color in 歌川国芳展: 生誕200年記念 Utagawa Kuniyoshi: Exhibition to Commemorate the 200th Anniversary of his birth, 1996, #22, p. 48.

2) In color in Kuniyoshi by Juzo Suzuki, Heibonsha Limited, Publishers, 1992, no. 80.

3) In color in Of Brigands and Bravery by Inge Klompmakers, p. 53. The text is from page 52.