Iwai Hanshirō VIII, Onoe Kikugorō V and Nakamura Jusaburō in Rainy Season Kimono and Old-Time Silks

Japanese Color Woodblock Print 

Iwai Hanshirō VIII, Onoe Kikugorō V and

Nakamura Jusaburō in

Rainy Season Kimono and Old-Time Silks

by Toyohara Kunichika, 1874

IHL Cat. #456

About This Print

The actors, from right to left, Nakamura Jusaburō (中村寿三郎) in the role of Bandō Chushichi (番當忠七); Onoe Kikugorō V (尾上菊五郎) in the role of Kamiyui Shinza (髪結新三) and Iwai Hanshirō VIII (岩井半四郎) in the role of Shirakoya Okuma (白子屋お熊) in the play Rainy Season Kimono and Old-Time Silks.  The actors are placed against a textile pattern often used as a backdrop for actor prints.

For background on the actors pictured in the print see their respective entries in the article The Kabuki Actor on this site.

The Play

Source: The Man Who Saved Kabuki: Faubion Bowers and Theatre Censorship in Occupied Japan, Shiro Okamoto, University of Hawaii Press, 2001, p. 162.
An 1873 Tokyo domestic play (sewamono) by Kawatake Mokuami.  Its formal title is Tsuyu Kosode Mukashi Hachijo (Rainy Season Kimono and Old-Time Silks). It is commonly known as Kamiyui shinza (Shinza the Barber).  Based on a 1727 incident, it tells of a love affair between shop assistant Chushichi and Okuma, daughter of a lumber dealer, which is disrupted when Okuma’s mother, seeking to get out of debt, arranges a marriage for her to someone else.  A rascally barber, Shinza, learns of the lovers’ planned elopement and kidnaps the girl en route, using the situation to extort money for her release.  Eventually, Shinza’s devious ways lead to his death.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #456
 Title (Description)Iwai Hanshirō VIII , Onoe Kikugorō V and Nakamura Jusaburō in Rainy Season Kimono and Old-Time Silks (Tsuyu kosode mukashi hachijyo 梅雨小袖昔八丈)  (Also translated as "The Old Story of the Wet Wadded Silk Cloth")
 Artist  Toyohara Kunichika (1835–1900)
 Signature Toyohara Kunichika hitsu with toshidama seal
 Seal  Toshidama seal below signature
 Publication Date
March 1874
Dai 大 seal of Daikokuya Kinzaburō (family name: Yamamura Kinzaburō 山村金三郎). [Marks: 08-102; publisher ref. 034]
 Carver not marked
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition excellent- full-size, unbacked
 Genre ukiyo-e; nigao-e; yakusha-e
 Format vertical oban triptych
 H x W Paper
 14 1/8 x 9 1/8 in. (35.9 x 23.2 cm) each sheet
 Collections This Print
Kyoto University Database on Yakusha-e Prints 34-1, 34-2, 34-3