A Comical Ken Game (Dôke ken awase): Actors Ichikawa Kuzô II as a Tiger, Nakamura Utaemon IV as a Toad, and Matsumoto Kôshirô VI as a Fox

「道化拳合」 二代目市川九蔵の虎、四代目中村歌右衛門の蛙、六代目松本幸四郎の狐

Japanese
Edo period
1847 (Kôka 4), 2nd month
Artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi (Japanese, 1797–1861), Publisher Ibaya Senzaburô (Dansendô) (Japanese)


Catalogue Raisonné

Linhart, "Interpreting...," in Japan at Play (2002), translation of poem p. 35 (this print not shown)

Dimensions

Vertical ôban; 36 x 24.4 cm (14 3/16 x 9 5/8 in.)

Accession Number

11.28863

Medium or Technique

Woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper

Not On View

Collections

Asia, Prints and Drawings

Classifications

Prints

MFA impressions: 11.21964, *11.28752 (deaccessioned in 2012), 11.28863, 11.37135

Inscription

Sake wa kenzake/ iroshina wa/ kairu hitohyoko mihyokohyoko/ hebi nura nura/ nameku de mairimasho/ sore janjaka janjaka janken na/ basama ni/ Watônai ga shikarareta/ tora wa hau hau/ totetsuruten/ kitsune de saa kinase

Signed

Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi giga
一勇斎国芳戯画

Markings

Censors' seals: Mera, Murata
No blockcutter's mark
改印:米良、村田
彫師:なし

Provenance

By 1911, purchased by William Sturgis Bigelow (b. 1850 - d. 1926), Boston [see note 1]; 1911, gift of Bigelow to the MFA. (Accession Date: August 3, 1911)

NOTES:
[1] Much of Bigelow's collection of Asian art was formed during his residence in Japan between 1882 and 1889, although he also made acquisitions in Europe and the United States. Bigelow deposited many of these objects at the MFA in 1890 before donating them to the Museum's collection at later dates.

Credit Line

William Sturgis Bigelow Collection