Sun Wukong Battles the Demon of the Yellow Wind

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, 1839-1892

A Modern Journey to the West: Sun Wukong Battles the Demon of the Yellow Wind
(Tsuzoku saiyuki: Songoku, Ofuo)

signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi ga, the descriptive text attributed to the writer Bokuto Ryoko on the rolled end of the emakimono-shaped cartouche, with publisher's seal Fukuta shi, Akasaka (Fukushimaya Tashichi of Senkindo), and combined censor and date seal Ne-juni, aratame (year of the rat [1864], 12th lunar month, examined)

oban tate-e 17 3/4 by 9 1/8 in., 45.1 by 23.3 cm

In this scene from chapter 21 of Xiyouji, Sun Wukong is confronted by the Demon of the Yellow Wind (Jp. Ofuo), on a rocky outcropping at the mouth of the Yellow Wind Cave to rescue his captured friend. Using his powers of transfiguration, Sun Wukong chewed on a few strands of his hair, recited an incantation, and created over a hundred monkeys to help him fight the demon. It was in vain, however, as Ofuo opened his mouth three times and blew a terrible hurricane as described in Jenner's translation:

As it howled and moaned all was changed;
Without sign or shadow the yellow dust whirled,
Whistling through forests, toppling mountains, and uprooting
trees, picking up dust to blot out the tumbling ridge.
The Yellow River's waters were all in turmoil

Though Sun Wukong was forced back, he was not defeated, and would soon return to face the demon again. With the help of the friendly Bodhisattva Lingji, he defeated the evil spirit and left the cave victorious.

References:
Fair (ed.) 2005, pp. 300-306, 314-315
Iwakiri 2014, p. 20, no. 21
MFA, Boston, accession no. 11.39776

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