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Saint Mayouwa Says Indecisiveness Is Bad (Mayou wa son ja)
from the series Sixteen Wonderful Considerations of Profit
(Myō densu jūroku rikan - 妙でんす十六利勘 迷者損者)

Identifier: 1843-46 Kuniyoshi bijin mirror
Description:

"...this is a mitate-e ('travesty or parody print'). It refers to the saying: 'Indecision is a waste of time and energy.' The woman, who is looking into a lacquered mirror atop a chest of drawers, is hesitant about what to take from a half-opened drawer. In the inset Mayō sonja [迷者損者] is holding a box with two miniature statues, apparently a representation of good and evil."

Quoted from: Heroes and Ghosts: Japanese Prints by Kuniyoshi 1797-1861 by Robert Schaap, p. 137.

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This is number 16 (十六) in the series as can be seen in the red printed circle right below the title cartouche and immediately above the woman's head.

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Part of the text starting nearest the red title cartouche reads: 十六りかんのくわんぢくを まよふハそんじゃとまうし奉る 此十六のそんじゃつまる所ハおのれ おのれが一心よりいづるなり 一心さへ たゞしけれバ なに事もなしなに事も なけれバくらふもなしくらふも なけれバあんじる事なしまよへバ悪女も びじんとミへ「ふんどしのほしたのもゆうれいと まちがへ「よくにまよへバまいごふだも小ばんとミへ たくあんのかうかうをミて

The University of Vienna provides the transliteration: Jūroku rikan no kanjiku o mayou wa sonja to mōshitatematsuru kono jūroku no sonja tsumaru tokoro wa onore onore ga isshin yori izuru nari isshin sae tadashikereba nanigoto mo nashi nanigoto mo nakereba kurō mo nashi kurō mo nakereba anjiru koto nashi mayoeba akujo mo bijin to mie fundoshi no hoshita no mo yūrei to machigae yoku ni mayoeba maigofuda mo koban to mie takuan no kōkō o mite mo koban o omoidashi hebi ga ite mo koshiobi ka to omoi hikigaeru ga ite mo saifu ka to omoi yuki ga fureba kore ga kome ka shio nara yokarō nazo to tsumaranu koto o omoi jisankin ga tsukeba Kasane mo Komachi to mie karuishizura mo Narihira to mieru kore mina yoku no mayoi nari riyoku shikiyoku ni mayoeba sono mi o hatashi inakamichi ni mayoeba kitsune ni bakasare ko yue ni mayoeba yoru no tsurubezushi o kaitaku nari shimagara ni mayoeba meutsuri ga shite ikezu kagami ni mukaite waraeba waraigao ga utsuru kore onore ga kokoro ga utsurunari kokoro ga mayoeba me ni miru mono mo mayotte mie mayou koto nakereba son o suru kizukai nashi hotoke mo oni mo wa ga kokoro yori shōzurunari yue ni kairaishi no ningyō o motte kono dōri o yoku satoru toki wa nanigoto mo medetaku tokaku mayou wa sonja to oshietamau uta ni yukusue ga kagami ni utsuru mono naraba musumezakari mo shiwakuchababā nan to kono tōri mayoikko nashi da yo

The university notes on this series are illuminating:

"After the edict (machibure) from the 6th month of 1842 which interdicted the bijinga (beauty-pictures), Kuniyoshi started to paint this type of pictures as giga (humorous pictures) in order to bypass the monitoring system of the authorities. The „16 illustrations of Arhat (十六羅漢 16 rakan) became “16 considerations of profit” (十六利勘 16 rikan), the “Buddhist saints” (尊者 sonja) became “damaged saints” (損者 sonja). Kuniyoshi produced in this series a very simple and straight logic about different characters of persons of that time, and presented them in a funny and cynical way. In this series of 16teen pictures two different types of censorship seal can be observed. Ten pictures are signed with “Murata”, six with “Mura”. In any case it indicates the person in charge for the censorship system, Murata Sahē. The researcher Iwakiri assumes, that the censor Sahē changed the seal from “Mura” two “Murata” during the printing of this series in the 10th month of 1846."

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