Set of Kintarô

(Kintarô zukushi, 金太郎尽)

c. 1840

 

The name Kintarô literally means Golden Boy.  He was the son of Princess Yaegiri.  Kintarô lived alone in the woods where he talked to the animals.  He was so strong that he could bend trees like twigs and vanquished various monsters.  When he grew up, Kintarô joined with the hero Raikô (Minamoto no Yorimitsu) and became a famous warrior himself.  Kintarô is also known as Kwaidô Maru and as an adult was called Sakata no Kintoki.  The prints in this series are each about 14 by 10 inches (36 by 25 centimeters), a size known as ôban.

 

Subtitle: Imitation of Kwanu (Kwanu mitate, 金太郎尽 関羽見立)

Scene: Kintarô poses on a rock as the Chinese general Kanu accompanied by two oni (demons) and holding a book of fairy tales (Mukashi mukashi)

Robinson: S12.1

Publisher: Tsujioka-ya Bunsuke

 

Subtitle: Picture of Sagami (Sagami no zu, 相撲之圖)

Scene: Kintarô, as a child in Sagami Province, with a demon and a tengu behind him umpiring a wrestling match between a hare and a monkey

Robinson: S12.2

Publisher: Tsujioka-ya Bunsuke

 

NOTE: Tengu are forest-dwelling creatures that are either human-like with wings and long noses or bird-like.

 

Subtitle: Kintarô and the Demons at Ogres’ Island (Kintarô onigashima asobi, 金太郎鬼ケ嶋遊)

Scene: Kintarô holding an axe is sitting in a portable shrine which is carried on the shoulders of demons wearing festival clothing

Robinson: Unlisted

Publisher: Tsujioka-ya Bunsuke

 

Another state of the above design

 

Scene: Kintarô as Yoshitoshi throwing beans at a small demon

Robinson: Unlisted

Publisher: Izumi-ya Ichibei (泉市)

 

NOTE: This print is titled “Sakata Kintarô” (坂田 金太郎).

 

 

Another state of the above design. Note than another seal, believed to be a collector’s seal, was added above the round censor’s seal.

 

Scene: Kintarô chasing demons away with a broom

Robinson: Unlisted

Publisher: No seal

 

NOTE: This print is titled “Sakata Kintarô” (坂田 金郎).

 

“Robinson” refers to listing in Kuniyoshi: The Warrior-Prints by Basil William Robinson (Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY, 1982) and its privately published supplement.

 

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