Kuniyoshi’s Analogies for the Six Conditions of Nature

(Rokuyôsei Kuniyoshi jiman, 六様性国芳自慢)

Publisher: Uo-ya Eikichi

Printed 1860 from designs of c. 1835

 

This series pairs mythical and historic people with auspicious and inauspicious days in Japanese astrology.  Stylistically, these prints date from about 1835, but they were published with date seals from 1860.  They are each about 14 by 10 inches (36 by 25 centimeters), a size known as ôban.

 

Day: Butsumetsu (佛滅, a most unlucky day)   

Character: Hori Ran Maru (保里蘭丸) spearing Yasuda Sakubei 

Robinson: S93.1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day: Senshô (先勝, a day for official business)         

Character: Inagawa Yoshimoto (稲川義元) in his last fight at Okehazama

Robinson: S93.2

 

 

 

Day: Taian (大安, a good day for traveling )     

Character: Kaidômaru (怪童丸), who is also known as Kintarô, by a waterfall

Robinson: S93.3

 

 

 

 

Day: Sembû (先負, not a very lucky day)    

Character: The priest Mongaku Shônin (文覚上人) doing 37 days penance under the freezing Nachi waterfall near Kyoto, helped by Fudo Myo-o’s two attendants Seitaka and Kongara

Robinson: S93.4

 

 

 

Day: Shakku (赤口, not a good day)        

Character: Ômori Hikoshichi (大森彦七) sees the reflection of beautiful woman as a demon

Robinson: S93.5

 

I am grateful to Ward Pieters for locating this image.

 

 

 

Day: Tomobiki (友引, a bad days for funerals)      

Character: Sasaki Takatsuna (佐々木高綱) being shown crossing place of the Inland Sea by fisherman Tôdayû.  Although the yellow panel adjoining the main cartouche reads Sasaki Takatsuna, this legend is in reality about Moritsuna.

Robinson: S93.6

 

 

 

This is a less labor-intensive state of the above design (note the title cartouche), which almost invariably means a later printing.  I am grateful to Ward Pieters for locating this image.

 

“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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