An image of Monkey-music moon

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi

(Japan 1839 – 1892)

Monkey-music moon, from the series One hundred aspects of the moon

Location
Upper Asian gallery
Further information

A samurai stands backstage at a humorous dance performance known as 'saragaku', literally ‘monkey music’, which includes song, dance and music. Originating in the tenth century, by the fifteenth century 'saragaku' evolved into nō theatre. Here, a crowd of men carrying umbrellas come early to try and find seats to watch a performance. It is a dawn moon, indicating it is an early performance which would last from 8am until the afternoon. During the Edo period the emperor’s envoy would be sent from Kyoto to Edo to send new-year greetings from the Tokugawa family. It was customary that the envoy and commoners from districts in the city be invited to a nō performance.

Place of origin
Japan
Period
Japan: Meiji period 1868–1912
Year
15 Jan 1891
Media
Print
Medium
colour woodblock; ōban
Dimensions
39.0 x 26.0 cm
Signature & date

Signed and dated.

Credit
Yasuko Myer Bequest Fund 2012
Accession number
258.2012.92