Seigen and Princess Sakura

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, 1839-1892

Valor in China and Japan: Seigen and Princess Sakura
(Wakan goki-zoroi: Seigen, Sakurahime)

signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu, with publisher's seal Daisada (Osada), carver's seal Hori Ushi, and combined censor and date seal Tatsu-shi, aratame (year of the dragon [1868], 4th lunar month, examined)

chuban tate-e 9 5/8 by 6 7/8 in., 24.5 by 17.5 cm

The decrepit monk Seigen looks up at his lover, Sakura-hime. Though details of their story varied depending on the retelling, the heart of the story is consistent. Seigen is a monk who breaks his vow of celibacy out of his love for the beautiful princess. However, their romance is ill-fated, and both figures die tragically.

Yoshitoshi revisited the subject in 1889 with a masterful composition of the Depravity of Monk Seigen in the vertical diptych format.

Keyes 1983, p. 379, no. 211.7



Scholten Japanese Art is open Monday - Friday, and some Saturdays by appointment only

Contact Katherine Martin at
(212) 585-0474 or email
to schedule a visit between 11am and 4pm preferably for no more than two individuals at a time.
Visitors are asked to wear face masks and practice social distancing at their discretion.

site last updated
May 6, 2022

Scholten Japanese Art
145 West 58th Street, suite 6D
New York, New York 10019
ph: (212) 585-0474
fx: (212) 585-0475