Sixteen Female Sennin, Charming Creatures

(Enshi jű-roku josen, 艶姿十六女仙)

c. 1847

 

Sennin are Taoist immortals. In addition to the eight principal male immortals, some texts also mention eight female immortals.á This series pair beautiful women with each of these sixteen immortals, with a poem inscribed on each print.á The series is listed as number 58 in Kuniyoshi by Basil William Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961).á The prints in this series are each about 14 by 10 inches (36 by 25 centimeters), a size known as ˘ban.

 

Sennin: Ryo Douhin (呂洞賓)

Chinese name: Lu Dongbin

Description: Woman in red robes holding a black lacquer plate, standing in front of a shoji screen with a painted dragon

Inset: Ryo Douhin seated conjuring a dragon from a pot

Publisher: Arita-ya Seiemon

 

Sennin: Roko

Chinese name:

Description: Woman in a blue robe with a floral pattern, holding an open fan and looking at two turtles for sale suspended by strings from a bar over dishes

Inset: Roko riding a tortoise of longevity

Publisher: This seal is identified as Naka-Ni (Kinsh˘d˘) of Terifuri-ch˘ in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as Ebisu-ya Sh˘shichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)

 

Sennin: Hoso (彭祖)

Chinese name: Peng Zu

Description: Reclining woman leaning on a long smoking pipe

Inset: Hoso seated and holding a fragrant branch

Publisher: Arita-ya Seiemon

 

Sennin: Gama (蝦蟇)

Chinese name: Liu Hai

Description: Barefoot woman holding a cat on her shoulder

Inset: Gama with a toad on his shoulder

Publisher: Arita-ya Seiemon

 

Sennin: Oshiky˘

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset: Oshiky˘ seated on a bird in flight

Publisher: This seal is identified as Naka-Ni (Kinsh˘d˘) of Terifuri-ch˘ in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as Ebisu-ya Sh˘shichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)

 

 

Sennin: Joriken

Chinese name:

Description: Beauty sitting on a barrel of sake

Inset:

Publisher:

 

Sennin: Kin (琴高)

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset:

Publisher: Arita-ya Seiemon

 

Sennin: 豊干禅師

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset:

Publisher: Arita-ya Seiemon

 

Sennin: 王處

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset:

Publisher: This seal is identified as Naka-Ni (Kinsh˘d˘) of Terifuri-ch˘ in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as Ebisu-ya Sh˘shichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)

 

 

Sennin:

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset:

Publisher: This seal is identified as Naka-Ni (Kinsh˘d˘) of Terifuri-ch˘ in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as Ebisu-ya Sh˘shichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)

 

 

Sennin:

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset:

Publisher: This seal is identified as Naka-Ni (Kinsh˘d˘) of Terifuri-ch˘ in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as Ebisu-ya Sh˘shichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)

 

 

Sennin: Shohei (初平)

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset:

Publisher: Arita-ya Seiemon

 

This is a key block print for the above design.á It is an impression pulled from the first woodblock made by a carver from the artistĺs original drawing.á The artist would write instructions for each color on a separate key block print, and the woodblock for each color was cut using one of these as a guide.á Registration marks (kento) are characteristically found on Japanese key block prints, although not seen on this example.á Kento are cut in each woodblock, so that the paper can be properly aligned on each woodblock during printing.á In addition to being a guide for carving the color woodblocks, the key block was also used to apply black ink (usually) in the printing process.

 

Sennin:

Chinese name:

Description: Woman with long tobacco pipe and paper lantern

Inset:

Publisher: Arita-ya Seiemon

 

Sennin:

Chinese name:

Description:

Inset:

Publisher: This seal is identified as Naka-Ni (Kinsh˘d˘) of Terifuri-ch˘ in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as Ebisu-ya Sh˘shichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)

 

 

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