Artist:Utagawa Hiroshige (Ando)
Medium: Woodblock print
Dates:12th month of 1857
Dimensions: 14 1/4 x 9 1/4in. (36.2 x 23.5cm) Sheet: 14 1/4 x 9 1/4 in. (36.2 x 23.5 cm) Image: 13 3/8 x 8 3/4 in. (33.9 x 22.2 cm)
Accession Number: 30.1478.43
Catalogue Description: The first of the thirty prints assigned to the "Summer" series with a view of the Nihonbashi Bridge at the center of downtown Edo. The composition is wholly innovative: the viewer is situated only about four feet above the surface of the bridge, its dramatic form in the foreground set against a distant landscape. On the left, there is a metal finial on the post; such ornaments were reserved for bridges of distinction (see print 76 of the series). In the lower right there is a bucket containing the famous "first bonito" (hatsugatsuo) that the Edo citizens prized highly. Fishermen competed in the early summer to rush the earliest catch to Edo's market, knowing that they could command very high prices. The appeal for this fish was not so much in its taste but for its rarity. This view faces east toward the rising sun (the meaning of the bridge's name) which is seen as a red arc between the trees above the foot of Edobashi, the bridge in the distance.