In 1852, the Year of the Water Rat, on the 6th Day of the 11th Month, People Born in Fire Signs Enter a Lucky Cycle (Kaei go, mizunoe ne no toshi, jûichigatsu muika kasei no hito uke ni iru): Fukurokuju
「嘉永五壬子年 十一月六日火性の人うけに入」 福禄寿
Ôta Mem. Mus., Warau ukiyo-e (2013), #170; Inagaki, Edo no asobi-e (1988), #29
Vertical ôban; 37 × 24.8 cm (14 9/16 × 9 3/4 in.)
Medium or Technique
Woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper
Not On View
The figure is made up of objects that start with the syllable fu: writing brush (fude), letter (fumi), flute (fue), bag (fukuro), blowfish (fugu), etc.
According to yin-yang divination (onmyôdô), luck followed a cycle of seven good years and then five bad years, according to one’s year of birth. The ages of people in the lucky category are listed.
Ippôsai Yoshifuji ga
Censors' seals: (illegible), Rat 5
No blockcutter's mark
By 1911, purchased by William Sturgis Bigelow (b. 1850–d. 1926), Boston [see note 1]; 1911, gift of Bigelow to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 19, 2005)
 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.
William Sturgis Bigelow Collection