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Friday, January 16, 2015

Utagawa Kuniyoshi, Night Procession of the Hundred Demons

Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798-1861), ukiyo-e artist. (歌川 国芳)

Ghost Stories: Night Procession of the Hundred Demons
(Kaidan hyakki yagyô)
c. 1836

This series shows male and female genitalia in the guise if various demons.  Each print bears a title, many of which are bawdy and often pun the demons’ names.  Although the individual prints are unsigned, the wrapper is signed “Ichimyôkai Hodoyoshi ga”, a signature Kuniyoshi is known to have used on erotic prints.  This series is not listed in ‘Robinson’ by Basil William Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961).  The prints in this series are each about 5 by 3.5 inches (13 by 9 centimeters), a size known as koban.

Thanks to: Kuniyoshi Project

Title: Nailing a Dick Doll at the Hour of the Ox (Ushi no toki mairi mara ningyô o utsu)

Description: A woman wanting to kill a man who had spurned her was supposed to don a crown of candles, go to a shrine at the hour of the ox (about 2 AM), and nail a straw figure of the man to s sacred tree

Title: Consoling Pussy of Horse Face Mountain, Sometimes Called Monk Riot (Tsuramayama dôjô-bobo, ichimei Sôdô-bô)

Description: Monk Sôjô taught military arts to Ushiwaka-maru (the young Yoshitsune) at Kuramayama

Title: Cunt Monk (Tsubi bôzu)

Description: Umi-bôzu (sea monk) was a large demon that emerged from the sea to haunt ships

Title: Penis Skeleton (Karikkotsu)

Description: A penis skeleton menaces a woman who has come onto a veranda at night

Title: Junping Doll (Tobiningyô)

Description: This is the cover of the series showing a toy in the form of a cat-person

Title: Crucifixion of Okoma (Okoma no karitsuke)

Description: Okoma, who was sentenced to be executed at Suzu-ga-mori for murdering her husband was pardoned after petitioning by her lover Saiza

Title: Jewel Gate (Gyokumon, also meaning vulva)

Description: An executed criminal’s head displayed at the entrance to a prison (gokumon)

Title: Pillar of Flames (Hi-hashira)

Description: A flaming pillar of penises rises above the roofs of the Yoshiwara pleasure quarter (which was frequently destroyed by fire)

Title: Four-eyed Acolyte (Yotsume kozô)

Description: Hitotsume kozô (one-eyed acolyte) was a much-feared demon.  This four-eyed version holds higo-zuiki (dried stems of sweet potato), which were used as a sex toy.

Title: Sexy Prick, Big Pussy (Enmara daibolo)

Description: Emma, king of hell, presides over lovemaking among the hungry dead (gakidô)

Title: Octo-pussy of the Numeri River (Numerikawa no bobo-dako)

Description: Large octopuses were hunted at the mouth of the Nameri River in Etchû Province

Title: Pussy Spirit of Kasane (Kasane no bobokon)

Description: The disfigured Kasane had been murdered by her husband, Yoemon, with a sickle by the Kinu River

Title: Licentious Priest with Angry Pussy (Jinbari nyûdô bobo dokisu)