Kuniyoshi Utagawa, Faithful Samurai, Kono Musashino-kami Moronao

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Original Japanese woodblock print.

Artist: Kuniyoshi Utagawa (1798-1861)
Title: 38. Kono Musashino-kami Moronao
Series: Stories of the True Loyalty of the Faithful Samurai
Publisher: Ebiya Rinnosuke
Date: 1847-1848
Dimensions: 24.7 x 35.5 cm
Condition: Some restored wormholes and stains. Backing to support original corners. Pinholes. Paper partially soiled and thinned.


Decked in his regal ware, the imperial agent Moronao cowers in shock. Large crests decorate his naga-bakama, formal skirts appropriate to his post as Master of Ceremony for the court. Moronao's family were accepted into the shogun's close circle as senior elders. His high position, a birthright, in this intimate circle undoubtedly fuelled his arrogance, causing him to treat others with disdain. This hubris reached its peak when he taunted the respected En'ya Hangan, causing him to draw his blade within the Kamakura palace, an offence punishable by death. However, Moronao clearly underestimated the love Hangan invoked in his retainers, who vowed to seek revenge, sacrificing their lives in order to retrieve the elder's head in retribution.

More Information
Artist Name Kuniyoshi Utagawa
Title 38. Kono Musashino-kami Moronao
Subject Samurai & Male
Dimensions 24.7 x 35.5 cm
Series The Faithful Samurai
Publisher Ebiya Rinnosuke