Kuniyoshi: Ôtaka Gengo TadaKuniyoshi: Ôtaka Gengo Tada
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Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798-1861)

The samurai Ôtaka Gengo Tadao aiming his spear at an invisible enemy (No. 14)

Series: Seichû gishi den (Stories of the Faithful Samurai)

Signature: Ichiyûsai Kunyoshi ga

Seal: Kiri-Mon

Censors: Mera and Murata

Publisher: Ebiya Rinnosuke (Ebirin, Kaijudô), Edo

Date: c. 1847/48

Size: Vertical Oban, 36 x 25,4 cm (overall)

Excellent impression and colours. Unbacked. At right margin minimal toning, else excellent condition.

Robinson, S54.14. Ill. in Weinberg, Kuniyoshi. The faithful samurai. Amsterdam 2005, p. 66 f, No. I.14

One of Kuniyoshi’s most famous warrior series. Each one of the 47 legendary heroes of the history of the loyal retainers (Chûshingura) is presented here in a single image, together with his biography.
Having become masterless samurai (rônin) after the forced suicide of their lord, the daimyô of Akô, Asano Naganori (1701), these loyal retainers avenged their master’s death - after two years of secret planning – by killing their foe Kira Yoshinaka.