Color woodblock print
Sheet: 33.4 x 20.5 cm (13 1/8 x 8 1/16 in.)
The Fanny Tewksbury King Collection 1956.755
This print shows a courtesan adjusting her hairdo before a mirror as her attendant looks on. In the cartouche next to her is a poem by Ōtomo no Kuronishi, a Heian period courtier celebrated as one of the Six Immortal Poets. His portrait and name appear in the disk-shaped title cartouche.
The poem reads: "Mirror Mountain / Has been raised high / To show us all / Our Lord will live a thousand years!" The poem appears in the Anthology of Ancient and Modern Verse (Kokinwakashū) with a note that it was sung at the investiture of the Emperor Daigo (885-930). Here, the courtesan could be perceived as a stand-in for the emperor, making this a rather risqué print.
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