A Collection of Flowers―Beautiful Women Compared

(Hana awase tsei bijin awase, 花合 世美人合)

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Chz

c. 1830s


This series likens contemporary beauties to different flowers. It is not listed in Kuniyoshi by Basil William Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961). The prints are each about 14 by 10 inches (36 by 25 centimeters), a size known as ban. I am grateful to Ward Pieters for assisting with this series.



Flowers: Heartvine and bamboo grass

Description: Woman fixing her hair


Flowers: Morning glories (asagao, 朝顔)

Description: Woman making tea


NOTE: The pattern on the kimono is the toshidama seal, the seal of the Utagawa artists. I am grateful to Robert Pryor for this image,


Another state in which the toshidama pattern on the kimono has been recut


Flowers: Plum blossoms

Description: Woman clutching a letter


Flowers: Wild carnations

Description: Woman standing under a tree


Flowers: Cherry blossoms

Description: Woman with a dog