Research: Hiroshige's One Hundred Famous Views of Edo: Woodblock Prints

Japanese Woodblock Print with significant elements labeled

All of the prints are in the vertical ōban format, measuring roughly 14 1/2 by 9 1/4 inches. The artist's signature, "Hiroshige ga," normally appears in a vertical cartouche on a red ground in the lower left-hand part of the picture, although some are placed on the right and three have a yellow ground.

In the upper right-hand corner of each print is a pair of adjacent title cartouches. The vertical rectangular cartouche on the right contains the series title, Meisho Edo hyakkei, always printed on a red ground, while the square one (or shikishi, "poem-card" format) is the title of the individual print. The artist lavished great attention on the design of these small squares, which are executed in a diversity of colors and patterns, including styled clouds, tortoise shell, and imitation of cut gold leaf.