Mirror of Famous Generals of Japan - Yoshitoshi designed this fantastic series of fifty-one prints of military heroes from 1876 to 1882. These dramatic images of famous warriors created a sensation with the Japanese public. Full of violence and intense emotions, Yoshitoshi's bold and innovative compositions tackled a historic subject using a modern style. His realism and drafting skill captured the important legacy of these national heroes at a time when Japan was struggling with the aftermath of the Satsuma Rebellion. Classic Yoshitoshi images, these dynamic prints are a great choice for collectors.
Kamatari and Prince Oe killing the Usurper Iruka, 1879 - Dramatic scene of Nakatomi no Kamatari and Prince Nakano Oe killing the usurper Soga no Iruka in 645. When Emperor Jomei died in 641, Prince Nakano Oe was bypassed for the through when the emperor's wife, Takara, became Emperor Kogyoku. Iruka served as her Grand Minister, and was said to be planning to take over the throne. During a reception for the Korean Ambassador in 645, Prince Nakano Oe and his retainer, the samurai Nakatomi no Kamatari, assassinated Iruka. Here, the loyal Kamatari raises his sword high above his head as Iruka tumbles to the floor, screaming in terror as he scrambles to escape his attacker. The prince watches from right, scowling unhappily, a small knife in his hand. After this incident, Kogyoku stepped down and her son became emperor, with Prince Nakano Oe taking the throne as Emperor Tenchi in 668. An interesting composition with a pillar neatly dividing the scene into graphic panels and the prince's head overlapping the text block above. Wonderful detail in the expressive faces, with burnishing on the black robe and black court cap. A rarely seen design from this series.
Artist - Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)
Image Size - 13 5/8" x 9" + margins as shown
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Stitching holes at side, small loss at edge, repaired. Fold at corner, wrinkle at side. Please see photos for details.