Act XI (Jūichidanme) from the series The Storehouse of Loyal Retainers (Chūshingura)


Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Act XI (Jūichidanme) from the series

The Storehouse of Loyal Retainers (Chūshingura)

by Utagawa Hiroshige II, 1855

Hiratsuka from the series Tōkaidō Road

IHL Cat. #1152

About This Print

Act XI (third episode): Moronao captured and Shown Enya's Suicide Sword by Yuranosuke - The scene is set on a snowy night under a full moon.  Moronao is discovered in his hiding-place in an outhouse used to store wood and charcoal. Yuranosuke shows him the dagger with which Yenya committed suicide and invites him to do likewise, an invitation which Moronao declines.

About this Chūsingura Series
Utagawa Hiroshige II created this series of twelve prints under his art name (gō) Shigenobu.  His teacher, Utagawa Hiroshige I, created several earlier series in the horizontal ōban format depicting the acts in the play Chūshinguraone published by Izumaya Ichibei between 1835-1839 and one published by Arataya Seiemon between 1843-1847. As with Hiroshige I's series, Hiroshige II bordered the prints with the double Tomo-ye crest of Yuranosuke, the hero of the play.  For several scenes Hiroshige II borrowed heavily from his teacher, but for his portrayal of this act he chose to depict the moment before Moronao is seized by Yuranosuke and then killed, as his teacher did in the below print.

Utagawa Hiroshige I
The Night Attack, Episode 3: Achieving the Goal (Youchi san, honmō)
from the series The Storehouse of Loyal Retainers (Chūshingura), 1835-1839
publisher Izumiya Ichibei (Kansendō)

To read more about the representations of Chūshingura in woodblock prints see the article on this site Chūshingura (The Treasury of Loyal Retainers) in Woodblock Prints.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog
 Title or Description Act XI 
 十一段目 Jūichidanme
 The Storehouse of Loyal Retainers
 忠臣蔵 Chūshingura
 Artist Utagawa Hiroshige II (1826-1869)
Shigenobu ga 一重宣画
 Seal (of the artist) none
 Publication Date
1855 (Ansei 2), 1st month

改、卯正 aratame, Hare 1
Fujiokaya Keijirō (Shōrindō)
 [Marks: seal no. 21-026; pub. ref. 063]
Seal reading  や, 藤慶 Ya, Fujikei
 Impression good
 Colors excellent
 Condition fair - soiling and rubbing primarily visible in margins and lower right corner of image; edge damage to margins; unbacked and untrimmed
 Genre ukiyo-e
 Format horizontal ōban
 H x W Paper 
 9 13/16 x 14 3/8 in. (24.9 x 36.5 cm)
 9 3/16 x 13 9/16 in. (23.3 x 34.4 cm)
 Collections This Print