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Asagao (chapter 20) from the album Illustrations for Genji monogatari in Fifty-Four Wood-Cut Prints

Ebina Masao (1913-1980)

Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Asagao (chapter 20) from the album

Illustrations for Genji monogatari

in Fifty-Four Wood-Cut Prints

by Ebina Masao, c. 1953

Ebina Masao (1913-1980)

IHL Cat. #2549

About This Print

In this scene from chapter 20, Asagao, it is winter in Genji’s thirty-second year and girls are playing in the snow-covered garden of Nijō Palace.

Source:  Genji gojūshijō 源氏五十四帖, published by Shin Kōbe Shinbunsha, 1974.
Murasaki-no-Uye is jealous over Genji’s love for Asagao, a Superintendent Sister of Kamo Shrine, who has vowed to remain a maiden, and has been acting with hostility towards Genji.

One moonlit night, when the snow lay deep on the ground, Prince Genji ordered little girls to build a snow hill in front of his chamber to remind him of when Fujitsubo, his father’s wife, who he had an affair with (bringing her notoriety), would play in her snow-covered garden by ordering snow hills to be built there.

For an excellent introduction to The Tale of Genji see Penguin's "Short Summary of the Tale" at https://www.penguin.com/static/packages/us/taleofgenji/introduction3.php

About The Album

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #2549
 Title or Description
Asagao 朝顔
seen translated as The Morning Glory; The Bluebell, Bellflowers
 Series Illustrations for Genji monogatari in Fifty-Four Wood-Cut Prints
 木版画源氏五十四帖  Mokuhanga Genji gojūyonjō
 Ebina Masao (1913-1980)
 not signed
 Seal正夫 Masao
 Publication Date 1953 or after (originally issued 1953; multiple editions are known)
 Publisher Yamada Shoin 山田書院
 Carver carving supervised by Yoshio Kawamo [Kawatsura Yoshio 川面義雄 (1880-1963)]
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition good - overall toning; staining (possibly foxing) in snowball in center of image; glue remnants verso from removal from folder; upper right corner of margin ragged from removal from folder
 Genre genji-e
 Format ōban
 H x W Paper 9 3/8 x 12 7/8 in. (22.1 x 31.3 cm)
 H x W Image 8 1/4 x 11 15/16 in. (21 x 30 cm)
 Collections This Print Ruth Chandler Williamson Gallery, Scripps College 2015.1.21; University of Kansas Libraries KU Bib ID: 4123242 (entire portfolio; images not shown); National Diet Library Call Number 913.36-E17g-K (entire portfolio dated 1958; images not shown)
 Reference Literature 
latest revision:
8/15/2021 created