Artist: Utagawa Kunisada (歌川国貞) / Toyokuni III (三代豊国)

Print: Triptych: Through the generations, the Sawamura lineage (Toshidoshi wo iwai no kakizome - 相続栄い字) in the play Date kurabe uwasa no saayate[伊達競高評鞘当]

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Dates: 1851,created
Dimensions: Overall dimensions

Signed: Toyokuni ga, in toshidama cartouche on each sheet - 豊国画
Publisher: Iseya Kanekichi (Marks 145 - seal 19-025)
Censor's seals: Mera, Watanabe

Related links: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston;

Physical description:

"These prints depict generations of Sawamura Clan. Sawamura Chojuro V (Ashikaga Yorikane), the current generation... is described as Sawamura Sojuro VI because Sawamura Sojuro II depicted on... [the]right is not normally counted. The two figures on... [the] left panel described as relatives are Sawamura Shirogoro I on the right (Suketakaya Takasuke II) and Sawamura Tanosuke II on the left. The same series also includes depiction of the generation of Ichikawa Danjuro entitled 'Toshidoshi Wo Iwai No Kumiire'."

[Note that the entry above did not show any of the macrons used for phoneticizing the names of the actors. We copied it just as it was printed.]

Quoted from: Kunisada: The Kabuki Actor Portraits by Shigeru Shindo, 1993, p. 145

The figure of Ashikaga Yorikane (Sawamura Chōjūrō V) can be seen in the lower corner of the far left panel. The figure in the lower right represents Toneri Matsuōmaru (三代目舎人松王丸).


According to the curatorial files at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston "The actor identified in the English translation as Sawamura Sôjûrô 1.5 is not considered part of the official lineage today; but at the time the print was made, he was considered to be Sawamura Sôjûrô II, and so all of the generation numbers from that point on are one higher than the present numbering of this lineage.'

The MFA list these actors as Sawamura Sōjūrō II (二代目沢村宗十郎) as Toneri Matsuōmaru (三代目舎人松王丸), Sawamura Sōjūrō I (初代沢村宗十郎 - aka Sawamura Chōjūrō I) as Ōboshi Yuranosuke (大星由良之助), Sawamura Sōjūrō 1.5 as Soga Jūrō Sukenari (R); Sawamura Sōjūrō IV (四代目沢村宗十郎) as Akashi Shiganosuke (明石 志賀之助), the tall wrestler standing upright in the center panel


There is another copy of this print in the Hachinohe Clinic Machikado Museum.


Illustrated in:

1) color Kunisada: The Kabuki Actor Portraits (Gototei Kunisada yakusha-e no sekai - 國貞:役者絵の世界) by Shigeru Shindō, 1993, pp. 100-101.

2) small black and white reproductions in the Illustrated Catalogues of Tokyo National Museum: Ukiyo-e Prints (3), #2815-17. (This triptych is not shown online at their web site.)