Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, 1839-1892
One Hundred Aspects of the Moon: Moon Above the Sea at Daimotsu Bay; Benkei
(Tsuki hyakushi: Daimotsu kaijo no tsuki; Benkei)
signed Yoshitoshi with artist's seal Taiso, carved by Enkatsu, and publisher's date and address seal Meiji jukyunen, ichigatsu, -ka, Nihonbashi-ku Muromachi Sanchome 9-banchi, insatsu ken hakkosha Akiyama Buemon (Meiji 19 , January) of Akiyama Buemon of Kokkeido
oban tate-e 14 1/2 by 9 7/8 in., 36.8 by 25 cm
Benkei (1155-1189), a hero of Japanese folklore, braves a storm at the brow of a boat. This scene was first made into a Noh play and later the popular kabuki drama Benkei in the Boat (Funa Benkei). Benkei, led by the famous Minamoto Yoshitsune (1159-1189), destroyed the Taira clan in the 1185 naval battle of Dannoura after decades of conflict. After the decisive battle, Yoshitsune's brother Minamoto Yoritomo (1147-1199) turned on him, forcing Yoshitsune and his armies to flee Kyoto by boat. During their flight, they encountered a massive storm aroused by the spirits of the defeated Taira clan. Benkei, himself a former priest, strode to the front of the boat rosary in hand and said a series of spells and prayers which dissipated the ghosts and the storm.
Keyes 1983, p. 460, no. 478.12
Segi 1985, p. 60, no. 27
van den Ing & Schaap 1992, p. 72, no. 54.12
Akita Museum of Modern Art 1999, p. 30, no. 93
Stevenson 2001, no. 12
Ota Memorial Museum of Art 2009, p. 21, no. 2.12
Newland & Uhlenbeck 2011, p. 136, cat. 101
Ota Memorial Museum of Art 2012, p. 151, no. 228
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