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Kawarazaki Gonjūrō, Nakamura Ganpachi, Arashi Kangorō, Seki Sanjūrō III, Sawamura Tanosuke III, Nakamura Ichō and Bandō Hikosaburō V [in the play Imayō Shuten Dōji]

Sawamura Tosshō II, Bandō Sanpachi V, Ichikawa Kodanji IV and Ichimura Kakitsu IV in the play Sandai Banashi Kōza no Shinsaku

Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Kawarazaki Gonjūrō, Nakamura Ganpachi, Arashi Kangorō, Seki Sanjūrō III, Sawamura Tanosuke III, Nakamura Ichō and Bandō Hikosaburō V

[in the play Imayō Shuten Dōji]

by Utagawa Kunisada II, 1863

The actors Bandō Hikosaburō V as Ukiyo Tohai, Ichimura Kakitsu IV as Nozarashi Gosuke and Ichikawa Danzō VI as Rokuji Namuemon


IHL Cat. #1652

About This Print

This print shows the actors (from right to left) Kawarazaki Gonjūrō as Minamoto no Yorimitsu, Nakamura Ganpachi as the demon Shiyatsuki?, Arashi Kangorō as the demon Metsuki?, Seki Sanjūrō III as Shuten Dōji, Sawamura Tanosuke III as Jijo (lady attendant) Keiko?, Nakamura Ichō as  Hanazono Hime and Bandō Hikosaburō V as Hirai no Yasumasa (a retainer of Minamoto no Yorimitsu) in the play A Modern Shuten Dōji (Imayō Shuten Dōji), performed at the Nakamura-za in February 1863.

Shuten Doji - A Popular Kabuki Theme
"One of Japan's most popular stories was the legend of the destruction by Minamoto no Yorimitsu (who actually lived AD 948-1021) of the ogre called the Shuten Doji ('The Drunken Boy'). This flesh-eating, drunken giant lived in the mountains, where he kept young women captive, some of whom he ate. Yorimitsu and his four companions gained access to his lair disguised as travelling priests, got the monster intoxicated, and cut off his head. The real Yorimitsu was a warrior who helped the court rid Japan of bandits and pirates, hence the attachment of this legend to him."

Source: "Writing the Love of Boys: Representations of Male-Male Desire in the Litereature of Murayama Kaita and Edogawa Ranpo," a dissertation by Jeffrey M. Angles, Ohio State University, 2003
"The Shuten dōji story was the subject of a large number of kabuki plays, including Shuten dōji (first performed in 1638), Imayō shuten dōji (A Modern Day Shuten Dōji, 1681), Shuten dōji oni taiji (The Subjugation of the Demon Shuten Dōji, 1684), Ōeyama no oni taiji (The Subjugation of the Demons of Mount Ōe, 1684), Shuten dōji furiwakegami (Parted Hair of Shuten Dōji, 1733), Ōeyama (Mount Ōe, 1861), Ōeyama shuten dōji (1867), and Ōeyama Minamoto no Tuwamono (Ōeyama and the Courageous Minamoto Warriors, 1887)." 

The Actors in the Print

For background on the actors Kawarazaki Gonjūrō, Nakamura Ganpachi, Arashi Kangorō, Seki Sanjūrō III, Sawamura Tanosuke III, Nakamura Ichō and Bandō Hikosaburō V see their respective entries in the article The Kabuki Actor on this site.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #1652
 Title Kawarazaki Gonjūrō, Nakamura Ganpachi, Arashi Kangorō, Seki Sanjūrō III, Sawamura Tanosuke III, Nakamura Ichō and Bandō Hikosaburō V [in the play Imayō Shuten Dōji]
 河原崎権十郎, 中村鴈八, 嵐冠五郎, [3]関三十郎, [3]沢村田之助, 中村いてう,
[5]坂東彦三郎, 當世酒呑童子
 Series n/a
 Artist 
 Utagawa Kunisada II (1823-1880)
 Signature 
国貞画 Kunisada ga inside yellow Toshidama 年玉枠 cartouche on each sheet
 Seal Toshidama 年玉枠 (see Signature above)
 Publication Date
1863 (Bunkyū 3 文久 3), 2nd month [censor/date seal appearing on each sheet]
 Publisher
本, 両國, 大平板
Daikokuya Heikichi (firm name Shōjudō) on each sheet [Marks: seal 22-094; pub. ref. 029]
 Carver
seal on left appearing on center and right sheets reading: 彫兼 Hori Kane
seal on right appearing on left sheet reading: 彫工子兼 Horikō Ko-Kane
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition good -
 Genre ukiyo-eyakusha-e
 Miscellaneous 
 Format vertical ōban triptych
 H x W Paper right sheet: 14 1/2 x 9 7/8 (36.8 x 25.1 cm)
 center sheet: 14 1/2 x 9 7/8 (36.8 x 25.1 cm)
 left sheet: 14 9/16 x 9 7/8 (37 x 25.1 cm)
 H x W Image right sheet: 14 1/8 x 9 5/8 (35.9 x 24.4 cm)
 center sheet: 14 1/4 x 9 1/2 (36.2 x 24.1 cm)
 left sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 5/8 (36 x 24.4 cm)
 Collections This Print The Tsubouchi Memorial Theatre Museum of Waseda University 101-7276, 101-7277, 101-7278

 Reference Literature
 

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