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Bando Hikosaburo as Akechi Mitsuhide

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, 1839-1892

Seven Brilliant Stars: Earth at Ogurusu, [Actor] Bando Hikosaburo as Akechi Mitsuhide
(Komei sichi yosei: Akechi Mitsuhide, Bando Hikosaburo)

signed oju Yoshitoshi ga, with carver's seal Hori Ei (Horiko Watanabe Eizo), and publisher's date and address seal Meiji kyu-toshi, go-tsuki, kokonoka-nichi; Nihonbashi-dori Itchome 1[9]-banchi, shuppanjin Okura Magobei (Meiji 9 [1876], May 9) of Yorozuya Magobei of Kineido

oban tate-e 14 5/8 by 10 in., 37 by 25.5 cm

The actor Bando Hikosaburo V (1832-1877) is in the role of Akechi Mitsuhide (Takechi Mitsuhide, 1528-1582) in the 1876 production of the play Oto ni hibiku sennari hisago, which premiered at the Shintomi Theater on September 15, just two months before the theater burned down. The play adapts events from the Sengoku-period (1567-1603) intrigue between the daimyo Takechi Mitsuhide, Oda Nobunaga (1534-1582), and Toyotomi Hideyoshi. The infamous daimyo Mitsuhide is depicted in Ogurusu, the town where he was killed by peasants thirteen days after he murdered Nobunaga.

The Seven Brilliant Stars (Komei shichi yosei) series depicts actors in seven roles from the 1876 production. Hikosaburo V is dressed in Mitsuhide's gold helmet, intricately patterned with a dragon protruding from the front.

References:
Keyes 1983, p. 418, no. 337.2
Akita Museum of Modern Art 1999, p. 22, no. 56
Newland & Uhlenbeck 2011, p. 103 (re: series)
Iwakiri 2014, p. 192, no. 300

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