Tanuki Fishing in the River (Tanuki no kawagari) (T) and Tanuki in a Shower (Tanuki no yûdachi) (B), from an untitled series of Tanuki (Raccoon-dogs)

狸の戯画 「狸の川がり」 「狸の夕立」

Edo period
about 1843–44 (Tenpô 14–Kôka 1)
Artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi (Japanese, 1797–1861), Publisher Kazusaya Iwazô (Iwakichi) (Japanese)

Catalogue Raisonné

Iwakiri 2011, #333; Suzuki et al., Utagawa Kuniyoshi ten (1996), #246; Suzuki 1992, #418; Inagaki and Isao, Kuniyoshi no kyôga (1991), #26; other prints in the series: Ôta Mem. Mus., Warau ukiyo-e (2013), #s 15-24


Two horizontal chûban on uncut vertical ôban sheet; 35.5 x 23.9 cm (14 x 9 7/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

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

Not On View


Asia, Prints and Drawings



In Japanese folklore, the racoon-dog (tanuki) is said to have a magically expandable scrotum.


Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi ga (on each design)


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)

[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