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Nōga taikan, Manjū (Nakamitsu)


 Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Manjū 満仲

from the series Nōga taikan

by Tsukioka Kōgyo, 1926

IHL Cat. #725

About This Print

Number 27* of 200 prints issued as part of the series Nōga taikan (Encyclopedia of Noh Plays) depicting a scene from the play Manjū by the playwright Zeami Motokiyo (1363-1443.)  This print still maintains its semi-transparent cover sheet providing information on the play and its characters.

cover sheet
click on image to see detail

* number appears in the lower right hand of the cover sheet.

The Play - Manjū

Source: A Guide to No, P.G. O'Neill, Hinoki Shoten, 1929, p. 100-101.

Tada no Manjū has sent his son Bijo to be educated in a temple.  When the boy returns, Manjū is so enraged by his neglect of his studies that he goes to strike him with his sword, but his faithful retainer Nakamitsu restrains him.  At this, Manjū orders him to kill Bijo himself.  Unable to ignore the order altogether, and yet finding it impossible to kill his master's son, Nakamitsu finally resolves his dilemma by killing instead his own son Kōju, who himself asked to be allowed to take Bijo's place.  When Manjū  later regrets the hastiness which has led, he thinks, to the death of his own son, Bijo is brought back to him by a priest from the temple where Nakamitsu sent him to hide.  Learning of the extent of Nakamitsu's devotion, Manjū pardons his son and then asks his retainer to perform a dance for them.  This Nakamitsu does, in celebration of the reconciliation, but all the time his thoughts are on his own son whom he has sacrificed to serve his lord.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #725
 Title Manjū 満仲 (Kanze name: Nakamitsu 仲光)
 Series Nōga taikan 能画大鑑 (Encyclopedia of Noh Plays or A Great Mirror of Noh Pictures or A Great Collection of Noh Pictures)
 Tsukioka Kōgyo (1869-1927)
Kōgyo seal
 Date July 5, 1926
 Edition unknown
 Publisher Seibi Shoten (or Seibi Shoin), Tokyo
 Carver Uchida Eikichi
 Printer Yoshida Takesaburō
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition excellent; one pin hole upper left of image; binding holes right side
 Genre ukiyo-e
 Format oban yoko-e
 H x W Paper 10 x 14 3/4 in. (25.4 x 37.5 cm)
 Collections This Print 
 Reference Literature