Bizarre-looking Manchurian Horsemen on an Expedition to Observe the Japanese Camp in the Distance Near Caohekou
(Sokako fukin Nichijin enbo Manshu kihei iso shutsujin no zu)
the title on the top margin of the center sheet, Sokako fukin Nichijin enbo Manshu kihei iso shutsujin no zu, signed Beisaku with artist's seal Saku, block carver's seal Hori Yata (Watanabe Yataro, 1850-1913), printer's seal Suri Nakajima, dated on the left margin, Meiji nijuhachinen, ichigatsu (Meiji 28 , January), publisher's information for Mizuno Asajiro, 1895
oban tate-e 14 3/4 by 29 3/4 in., 37.4 by 75.7 cm
Beginning in early November 1894, the Fifth Division of the Japanese army advanced north and eastward into southern Manchuria, encountering little resistance from the Chinese army until November 9th when Japanese soldiers on reconnaissance were met with fierce Manchurian cavalry who forced the Japanese to withdraw to the southeast.
While this impression is clearly dated January 1895, the impression in the collection of the Saint Louis Art Museum is dated February 1995. The change in date may be explained by a correction to the alignment of the background blocks on the left sheet which presumably necessitated new approval from the authorities to publish the print.
Louise E. Virgin, Japan at the Dawn of the Modern Age: Woodblock Prints from the Meiji Era, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 2001, p. 93, no. 45, accession no. 2000.255a-c (date trimmed off)
Philip K. Hu, ed., Conflicts of Interest: Art and War in Modern Japan, Saint Louis Art Museum, 2016, p. 139, no. 46, accession no. 116:2010a-c (dated February 1894)
(inv. no. C-3014)
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