Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳)

Print: Twilight Snow at Ishiyama (Ishiyama bosetsu - 石山暮雪): Suzuki Shigeyuki (鈴木重幸) from the series Eight Views of Military Brilliance (Yōbu hakkei - 燿武八景)

Bookmark and Share
Dates: 1852,created
Dimensions: 9.875 in,14.625 in,Overall dimensions
Medium: Japanese woodblock print

Signed: Ichiyūsai Kuniyoshi ga
Artist's seal: kiri
Publisher: Enshūya Hikobei
(Marks 055 - seal 21-016)
Date seal: 1852, 7th month
Censor seals: Watanabe and Mera

Related links: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; British Museum; Victoria and Albert Museum; Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston - an 1860 Yoshifusa version of this event; British Museum - an 1855 Kuniyoshi version of this scene ; Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg - ca. 1850 Kuniyoshi of Shigeyuki;

Physical description:

"Suzuki Saemon Hida no kami Shigeyuki is a marksman who attempts unsuccessfully to shoot Oda Nobunaga (1534-82) during an ambush at Ishiyama. this scene is compared with Lingering snow at Ishiyama from the Eight views."

Quoted from: Heroes and Ghosts: Japanese Prints by Kuniyoshi 1797-1861 by Robert Schaap, p. 108. This is illustrated, too.


There is an earlier series by Kuniyoshi, the Taiheiki eiyuden, from the late 1840s, which also has a print of Suzuki Shigeyuki laying in wait to ambush Oda Nobunaga, but in that case Shigeyuki is set among reeds in summer and not winter.


The historical figure Suzuki Shigehide

Elena Varshavskaya in the endnote 28.1 to her volume Heroes of the grand pacification: Kuniyoshi's Taiheiki eiyū den, while discussing a different print, said:

"He was an influential person in the Buddhist community of Saiga in Kii province. Along with Buddhist centres Ishiyama Honganji... and Negoro... the community of Saiga had protracted hostilities with Oda Nobunaga. During a ten-year long confrontation (1570-80) between Nobunaga and Ishiyama, Suzuki commanded the artillery of Negoro and Saiga and kept harassing Nobunaga's army. According to the warrior's biography retold on the print, he did not live to see Oda Nobunaga's victory over the Buddhist forces. A biographical dictionary of Japanese warlords of the Warring States period, however, describes the development of the events otherwise. When the resistance of Ishiyama Honganji was crushed, Suzuki Shigehide acted as an intermediary between Honganji and Nobunaga. After Hideyoshi subjugated the province of Kii, Suzuki Shigehide followed him. He is known in Japanese history under the name Saiga Magoichi."


Also illustrated in Kuniyoshi The Warrior-prints by Basil Robinson, Oxford, 1982, S76, #2.


There is another copy of this print in the Rijksmuseum voor Volkenkunde, Leiden.