Original Meiji era Japanese Woodblock Print
Ichikawa Danjuro as Endo Musha Morito Holding the Head of Kesa Gozen, 1897
Comments - Bold design of Ichikawa Danjuro as the warrior Endo Morito holding up the severed head of the beauty Kesa gozen. The virtuous wife of a palace guard, Lady Kesa became the object of the samurai's unwanted affections, and although she repeatedly refused his advances, he remained persistent. To end things, she asked him to kill her husband, then after cutting off her hair, took her husband's place in bed that night. Morito crept into their bedroom and severed the head of what he thought was the beauty's husband. When Morito discovered that he had killed the beauty, he became a monk, taking the name of Mongaku and doing penance under an icy waterfall. This print shows Morito staring at the head unflinchingly, his brows furrowing he realizes that he has killed his beloved instead of her husband. Maple leaves drift down through the sky around him. A dramatic design.
Artist - Meiji era artist (unsigned)
Image Size - 14 1/8" x 9 1/2" + margins as shown
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Slight toning, a few creases. Please see photos for details.