Picture of Sadanobu Threatening a Demon

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, 1839-1892

New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts: Picture of Sadanobu Threatening a Demon in the Palace at Night
(Shingata sanjurokkaisen: Sadanobuko yoru kyuchu ni kai o osoreshimu no zu)

signed Yoshitoshi, with aritst's seal Taiso, carved by Chokuzan, date seal Meiji sanjungo, sangatsu, ichika (Meiji 35 [1902], March 1), and publisher's seal of Matsui Eikichi of Kakuhakudo

oban tate-e 14 5/8 by 10 in., 37 by 25.5 cm

Fujiwara Tadahira (Fujiwara Sadanobu; 880-949) was a 10th-century minister who dutifully served both emperors Daigo (897-930) and Suzaku (ruled 930-946) from 914 until 941. In this episode, taken from the 1119 history The Great Mirror (Okagami), Tadahira is disrupted by a hairy demon on his way to an appointment at the court. Upon feeling the demon grab a hold of his arm, Tadahira shouted "who stops a man on his way to the council chamber with an Imperial decree? You will regret it if you don't let go." Intimidated by the forcefulness of the remonstration, the demon hurried into the night, and Tadahira continued on his way.

In February and March of 1902, the publisher Matsui Eikichi V (1870-1931) of Daikokuya reissued the designs of the New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts series as a complete set. He may also been responsible for commissioning the table of contents page associated with the series.

Helen Craig McCullough, trans., Okagami, 1980, p. 106
Roger Keyes, Courage and Silence, 1983, p. 488, no. 509.1
John Stevenson, Yoshitoshi's Thirty-Six Ghosts, 1983, p. 20, no. 1
Shinichi Segi, Yoshitoshi the Splendid Decadent, 1985, p. 76, no. 94.2
Eric van den Ing & Robert Schaap, Beauty and Violence, 1992, p. 141, no. 65.1
John Stevenson, Yoshitoshi's Strange Tales, 2005, p. 84, no. 1
Andreas Marks, Japanese Woodblock Prints: Artists, Publishers, and Masterworks 1680-1900, 2010, pp. 272-274
Andreas Marks, Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium, 2011, pp. 103-106, no. 029; p. 229, no. 307
Ota Memorial Museum of Art, Tsukioka Yoshitoshi: 120th Memorial Retrospective, 2012, p. 147, no. 220



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site last updated
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Scholten Japanese Art
145 West 58th Street, suite 6D
New York, New York 10019
ph: (212) 585-0474
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