Kuniyasu Utagawa

The full set of forty-seven loyal retainers shown in retreat at the Ryōgoku bridge, um 1825

About the object

The title of the print refers to the popular Kabuki play Chushingura in which 47 warriors are intent on avenging the death of their master. On the face of it, one might assume therefore that precisely these 47 Ronin would appear in the print. In fact, not only have these now itinerant warriors been depicted, but Kuniyasu also managed to represent 47 actors of the then Kabuki cast complete with individual features.

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