Home‎ > ‎Artists‎ > ‎Anonymous Artists‎ > ‎

Women warriors, No. 6 from the newspaper True News from Kagoshima-ken


Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Women warriors, No. 6 from the newspaper

True News from Kagoshima-ken

by unknown artist, March 1877

Illustration of the the Army and Navy Protecting the Legations and Japanese Residents

IHL Cat. #2184

About This Print

Print number 6 in a series of woodblock prints issued in Osaka carrying the latest news of the Satsuma Rebellion. This series of news prints, consisting of fifteen prints, was published for three months and then ceased publishing for an unknown reason. The series was one of a handful that sprung up to fulfill public demand for information on the short-lived rebellion.

This print depicts a group of women warriors who fought for the rebels. For more information on women fighting on the side of the rebellion see the print Story of Kirino Toshiaki's Mistress, Akiko from the series Instructive Models of Lofty Ambition and "Fit to Print" below.

For additional information on newspaper color woodblock prints see the article Nishiki-e shinbun and Newspapers in Meiji Japan on this site. For other prints of the Satsuma Rebellion see the article Prints of the Satsuma Rebellion of 1877 and Saigo Takamori.

Thisinstallation features more than 30 loans from two remarkably rich localresources, the Lavenberg Collection of Japanese Prints, and the Lee & MaryJean Michels Collection. It was co-curated by Professors Akiko Walley (Historyof Art and Architecture) and Glynne Walley (East Asian Languages andLiteratures) and JSMA Chief Curator Anne Rose Kitagawa. QR codes on selectedlabels allow visitors to access translations and explanations of the complexwordplay, imagery, and cultural context of these fascinating objects.


Women Warriors, No. 6 from the newspaper
“Kagoshima Prefecture, A Full and True Report” (Kagoshimaken makoto no shirase)

Japanese;Meiji period, March 1877

Ukiyo-e woodblock-printed “brocade newspaper” (shinbun nishiki-e) in vertical ōban format; ink and color on paper

TheLavenberg Collection of Japanese Prints, IHL.2184



A certain person in the service ofKumamoto joined the Government forces and died spectacularly in battle. Whenhis wife heard of this she thought that, rather than live out her remainingyears in vain upon the largesse of the province, she would instead go forth anddispel her husband’s frustration. She tightened her sash and smoothed down herhems as she ran after the bandit-soldiers, determined not to let them escape.Wait for us, said the women who had served her for years, for we too would joinour lord. They ventured forth onto the battlefield and gazed upon the banditgang. Nimbly they brandished their swords, cutting into their foes, chargingthem, taking their heads, until it was a right bloodbath. They smiled as theystrode onto the field of battle. Theirs was a virtue rare these days.

Among the rebels were women whosefathers or husbands had died in battle, and who yearned to send them offproperly, even if it meant becoming corpses themselves, rather than fading inthe world crying helpless tears. A women’s brigade numbering over one thousandthus gathered unto the bandits’ encampment, it is said. Carrying halberds theolder women wore long white robes, while the younger wore gaiters of crimson cotton,and all wore headbands. &c, &c; to be continued in the next volume.

(Glynne Walley, Associate Professor of East Asian Languages& Literatures)

Two Other Prints in the Series
          Print Number 1
Print Number 14

Print Details

 IHL Catalog
 Title or Description[Women warrirors], No. 6, True News from Kagoshima-ken
 鹿児島県まことの電知 六号 Kagoshima-ken makoto no shirase
 [also seen translated as True Stories Transferred by Wireless from Kagoshima Prefecture (Kagsohima-ken makoto no denchi)
 Artist Anonymous Artists
 Signature not signed
 Seal (artist) not sealed
 Publication Date
March 16, 1877
Suzuki Rihei 鈴木利兵衛
 編輯出版人 鈴木利兵衛
compilation and publishing: Suzuki Rihei
[reading of publisher's name is unconfirmed; publisher is not listed in Marks]

 Impression good
 Colors excellent
 Condition good- full-size and unbacked; minor wrinkling and soiling
 Genre nishiki-e shinbun
 Format vertical ōban
 H x W Paper 
 14 7/8 x 10 in. (37.8 x 25.4 cm)
 H x W Image 14 3/4 x 9 13/16 in. (37.5 x 24.9 cm)

 Collections This Print

last update:
10/24/2019 created