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Illustration of a Large Intense Engagement, Sino-Japanese War


Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Illustration of a Large Intense Engagement 

Sino-Japanese War

by Watanabe Nobukazu, 1894

Illustration of Meeting at the General Staff Headquarters

IHL Cat. #84

About This Print

The inscription in the white box to the left of the title cartouche provides a summary of action on July 29, likely making this a scene from the battle of Seonghwan [also known as the battle of Asan] in Korea, the first major land battle of the Sino-Japanese War (1894-1895).  Chinese troops are seen fleeing the charging Japanese marines and the airborne bodies of the enemy can be seen in the bright orange explosion, in this scene made up by the artist.

click on image to enlarge

 click on image to enlarge
Scroll detail

Reuse of the Blocks

With a change in color and the carving of a new subtitle cartouche next to the title cartouche in the upper right-hand corner, a set of blocks could be used to illustrate another battle, occurring at a later date, in the Sino-Japanese War.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog
 Title or Description Illustration of a large intense engagement Sino-Japanese War
 Nisshin dai-gekisen no zu 日清大激戰之圖 [日清大激戦之図]
 Artist  Watanabe Nobukazu (1872-1944)
ōju Yosai Nobukazu hitsu 應需楊斎延一筆
 Seal  none
 Publication Date August 1894 (Meiji 27) (see Publisher below)
横山良八 Yokoyama Ryōhachi [Marks: pub. ref. 623; seal not shown]
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition excellent - staining in margins, minor thinning on lower right hand corners of left and right panels, full margins and separate sheets
 Genreukiyo-e; senso-e
censor seal reading 内務省検閲済 Naimushō kenetsu zumi
Home Ministry examination complete
The Publication Law of 1893 (Shuppan hō) required all publications to be vetted by the home ministry, however there are few Sino-Japanese War prints bearing their examination stamp. As this print was issued in August 1894, just as war was officially declared against China, it may have been subject to censorship regulations that later prints were not, as the government imposed separate censorship during the war.
 Format vertical oban triptych
 H x W Paper
 14.5 in. x 10 in.  (36.8 cm x 25.4 cm) each sheet

 Collections This Print
 Digital Collections of Keio University Libraries (note: they incorrectly attribute the print to Adachi Ginko)
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