Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳)

Print: Gongsun Sheng, Single Purity (Nyūunryū Kōsonshō -入雲龍公孫勝) from the series
One Hundred and Eight Heroes of the Popular Shuihuzhuan All Told
(Tsūzoku Suikoden gōketsu hyakuhachinin no hitori - 通俗水滸伝豪傑百八人之一個) 

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Dates: 1827 - 1830,created
Dimensions: 9.75 in,14.5 in,Overall dimensions
Medium: color woodblock print

Signed: Ichiyūsai Kuniyoshi ga
Publisher: Kagaya Kichiebei - the top of this seal is barely visible at the bottom of the print right below the figure's left foot -(Marks 194)
Censor's seal: kiwame

Related links: British Museum; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Agency for Cultural Affairs; Ishibi Prefectural Museum; Tokyo National Museum;

Physical description:

Nyūunryū Kōsonshō is a Daoist priest who is extremely skilled in the magic of calling winds and rains and mists and riding in clouds (hence his name: Dragon in the clouds). Here, Kōsonshō invokes a stormy wind (and a dragon) with his short sword.

This image is number 10 in Klompmakers' book on this series.


We first encounter this character in Chapter 15 of Outlaws of the Marsh, p. 231. Gongsun appears as a Taoist priest who wants to see the ward chief. He is offered rice and/or money to go away, but doesn't want either. He just wants to speak with the ward chief, Chao Gai. A struggle ensues and Gongsun gets the better of his opponents. Finally he is taken before Chao Gai who finds him most civil and asks him to join him in having some tea. The ward chief asks him his name and where he comes from.

"My family name is Gongsun, my given name Sheng. In the Taoist order I am called Single Purity. I was born in Jizhou Prefecture. Since childhood I have loved playing with weapons, and have become quite skilled in many of them, so people call me Gentleman Gongsun Sheng. I have also studied Taoist lore. Because I can summon the wind and bring the rain, ride the mists and drive the clouds, in the fraternity of gallant men I'm nicknamed Dragon in the Clouds. I have long known of the eminent Ward Chief Chao of East Bank, Yuncheng County, but I have never had the good fortune of meeting you. In honor of making your acquaintance, and by way of introducing myself, I would like to present you with a hundred thousand strings of cash worth of gold and jewels. I wonder whether the Ward Chief would accept?"
[More of this quote is to follow from page 233.]