Utagawa Kunisada (歌川国貞) / Toyokuni III (三代豊国) (artist 1786 – 01/12/1865)
Onoe Kikujirō II (尾上菊次郎) as Oishi (お石), the wife of Ōboshi Yuranosuke, in Act IX the Kanadehon Chūshingura ('Copybook of the Treasury of Loyal Retainers': 仮名手本忠臣蔵)
9.5 in x 13.5 in (Overall dimensions) Japanese color woodblock print
Signed: Gototei Kunisada ga
Publisher: Kagaya Kichiemon (Marks 195 - seal 22-025)
Censor's seal: kiwame
Muzeum Sztuki i Techniki Japońskiej Manggha, Krakow
Hankyu Culture Foundation This print commemorates a performance at the Nakamura Theater in the 8th month of 1837. In this scene from Act IX Oishi, the wife of Yuranosuke, is about to carry a small table into the next room where Honzō's wife Tonase and his daughter Konami are. Oisho had just called off the marriage of her son Rikiya with Konami. Konami is despondent and only loves him. She feels that life without him is not worth living. In several twists in the story Tonase says she will help Konami by killing her and then herself. Just as she is about to strike Honzō, in disguise, stops them. That is when Oisho returns to the women with the small table and says that she has changed her mind and will allow Rikiya to marry Konami but only on one condition: Tonase and Konami must kill Honzō and place his severed head on the table top. Honzō reveals himself and confronts Oisho and then stomps on the small table smashing it to smithereens.
The light blue fabric nearest the figure of Oishi carries the round double comma motif or tomoe design which was often used in kabuki stage designs for this scene. It appears in quite a few other prints of the Kanadehon Chūshingura. The double-tomoe pattern is an identifier for the character Ōboshi Yuranosuke.
The white lettered, gray fabric hanging behind Oishi says "忠臣蔵" which translates as Chūshingura. The name of the actor and the role being played appeas printed in black over the blue and white fabric along the left side of the print. (JSV)
Kagaya Kichiemon (加賀屋吉右衛門) (publisher)
Onoe Kikujirō II (二代目尾上菊次郎: 11/1835 to 12/1856 and 1858 to June 1875) (actor)
actor prints (yakusha-e - 役者絵) (genre)
Chūshingura (忠臣蔵 - 47 rōnin) (genre)