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Ichigaya Hachiman Shrine, No. 41 in One Hundred Famous Views of Edo

Utagawa Hiroshige

Asian Art

Ichigaya Hachiman Shrine was not as culturally lofty as this image suggests. Within the shrine precinct itself was located a theater and numerous tea stalls, and the bustling street was known throughout Japan for the prostitutes who plied their trade there.

lchigaya Hachiman was located at the western edge of a long bluff that in the Edo period was one of the estates of the Tokugawa family of Owari (Nagoya), and a watchtower and part of the outer barrack walls of the Owari mansion can be seen at the upper left. It was there that the novelist Mishima Yukio performed his dramatic ritual suicide in 1970.

This print is one of three in the series that have been ascribed to Hiroshige II.

MEDIUM Woodblock print
  • Place Made: Japan
  • DATES 10th month of 1858
    PERIOD Edo Period, Ansei Era
    DIMENSIONS 14 3/16 x 9 5/16in. (36 x 23.7cm) Sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 5/16 in. (36 x 23.7 cm) Image: 13 1/4 x 8 3/4 in. (33.6 x 22.2 cm)  (show scale)
    MARKINGS Publisher: Shitaya Uo Ei
    SIGNATURE Hiroshige-ga
    ACCESSION NUMBER 30.1478.41
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Anna Ferris
    PROVENANCE Prior to 1930, provenance not yet documented; by 1930, acquired by Anna Ferris of Summit, NJ; 1930, gift of Anna Ferris to the Brooklyn Museum.
    Provenance FAQ
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Scene looks down on the Outer Moat of Edo Castle outside Ichigaya Gate (which is today Ichigaya station). In the street below there are tea stalls and various types of entertainment. Ichigaya was known throughout Edo for the prostitutes who plied their trade here, according to one 18th-century source). Above, behind a red gate and dark "torii" at the head of a steep stone stairway, are the red buildings of Ichigaya Hachiman Shrine. The red and yellow bordered cloud bands suggest a sense of distance and an aura of power around the shrine. The small yellow-roofed, lantern-lined pavilion, on the right, below the main shrine building, was one of the tea stalls, just outside the theater, located within the shrine precincts. In the Edo Period, Ichigaya Hachiman was one of the estates of the Tokugawa family of Owari (Nagoya). In the upper left there is a watchtower and part of the barrack walls of the Owari mansion, which became the Military Academy of the Japanese Army in the Meiji Period and at present are the barracks of the Self-Defense Force. It was here that the novelist Mishima Yukio performed his dramatic seppuku in 1970.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION Utagawa Hiroshige (Japanese, 1797–1858). Ichigaya Hachiman Shrine, No. 41 in One Hundred Famous Views of Edo, 10th month of 1858. Woodblock print, 14 3/16 x 9 5/16in. (36 x 23.7cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Anna Ferris, 30.1478.41 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 30.1478.41_PS20.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 30.1478.41_PS20.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2023
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