Artist: Utagawa Kunisada (歌川国貞) / Toyokuni III (三代豊国)

Print: Na (な): Murumatsu Kihei nyūdō Ryūen (村松喜兵衛入道隆圓) portrayed by Seki Sanjūrō III (関三十郎) from the series Stories of the True Loyalty of the Faithful Samurai (Seichū gishi den - 誠忠義士伝)

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Dates: 1864,created
Dimensions: 9.75 in,14.0 in,Overall dimensions
Medium: Japanese woodblock print

Signed: nanajūkyū sai (79 years old)
Toyokuni hitsu (七十九歳豊国筆)
Artist's seal: toshidama
Publisher: Daikokuya Kinzaburō
(Marks 034 - seal 08-102)
Carver: Hori Chō
Combined date and aratame censor seal: 1864

Related links: Tokyo Metropolitan Library; Waseda University; Edo-Tokyo Museum; Kunisada.de - the full set;

Physical description:

The term nyūdō in this figures name "...means literally 'the one who has taken the path' and was applied to people who had vowed abidance by the rules of Buddhist monks, but continued to live at home."

Quoted from: Heroes of the grand pacification: Kuniyoshi's Taiheiki eiyū den by Elena Varshavskaya, end note 4.1, p. 162.


The dentate pattern on this print is a give away that it is a Chūshingura-themed prints. But not all prints devoted to this story show these designs. "The distinctive dentate pattern on the coats is an iconographical motif which represents the inescapable progress of day and night, symbolizing unfailing loyalty."

Quoted from: 'Mitate kokkei Chūshingura. Hiroshige's humorous parodies of the Loyal Retainers' by Pierre Wijermans and Henk Herwig, fn. 32, p. 73.