Top Courtesans of the Three Cities Playing Ken (Zensei asobi san tsu no aiken)

「全盛遊 三津の あひけん」 「京島原」 「江戸新吉原」 「大坂新町」

Japanese
Edo period
about 1818–25 (Bunsei 1–7)
Artist Utagawa Kunisada I (Toyokuni III) (Japanese, 1786–1864), Publisher Nishimuraya Yohachi (Eijudô) (Japanese)


Dimensions

Vertical ôban triptych; 39.2 x 78.7 cm (15 7/16 x 31 in.)

Accession Number

11.15413, 11.15414, 11.15424

Medium or Technique

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

Not On View

Collections

Asia, Prints and Drawings

Classifications

Prints

Triptych: 11.15413 (center), 11.15414 (left), 11.15424 (right)

Inscription

「ふりつみてよしある松や雪女 京 立圃」
「闇の夜は吉原はかり月夜かな 江戸 其角」
「詠むとて花にもいたし首の骨 大坂 宗因」

Signed

Gototei Kunisada ga (on each sheet)
五渡亭国貞画

Markings

Censor's seal: kiwame
改印:極

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