Sino-Japanese War 1894-95: The Port Arthur Campaign
 
 
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Condition :       Excellent colour and detail. Three separate panels. Slight toning and soiling, a few small spots and creases. Slight rubbing at edges.
                             
Terrific illustration from the Sino-Japanese War showing the fierce battle at Jiuliancheng (Kyuren-jo in Japanese). Meiji Imperial forces attack a fortress, with officers on horseback urging their troops forward with waving swords. The sky explodes with bursting shells, sending out orange flames and clouds of smoke. A general melee ensues with heavy fighting outside the stone walls. A great depiction capturing the intensity of the battle, beautifully drawn and Shaded.
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Names of officers: right, above: Tatsumi, Shōshō (Major-General); below:  Oshima, Shōshō (Major-General); above centre: Satō, Taisā (Colonel); lower centre: Nagaoka, Sanbō (Staff Officer); left, under tree; Okuyama, Shōsa (Major); left, next to him: Nozu, Chūjō (Lieutenant-General); extreme left: Narita Shūsa (Lieutenant-Colonel).
This is indeed one of the masterpieces about the war, and probably Ginkō’s best. One can almost hear the thunder and thud of the onrushing men, breathe the intoxicating gunpowder, become aware of the orders screamed from every side, sense the clatter of the horse’s hoofs, all this basking in the morning haze of an Indian Summer day, the billowing clouds of gunshots and rifles. Not the least, the splendid beauty of those horses, mainly Okuyama’s steed, worthy of Dega’s best. Close to him, the leader of the battle, Lieutenant-General Nozu. A victory which threw  wide open the doors of Manchuria and the closing of the Korea campaign, with Peking and Mukden in sight. Those swirling waves of men from the land of the Rising Sun, their total dedication to their officers, always leading them, worthy heirs of the samurai of old. In this inspired work, Ginkō has reached an unsurpassed level.  Only Gekkō had done as well and even better. Both of them attained the highest possible standards among the finest of Ukiyo-e masters and also on the par with Kuniyoshi’s wondrous warriors prowesses.Excerpt from the 1983 publication “The Sino-Japanese War by Nathan Chaikïn”,
           
Collections :      Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts.
Basil Hall Chamberlain Collection.

References :      Illustrated in the 1983 publication “The Sino-Japanese War by Nathan Chaikïn”, catalogue number
                        66, on page 176.
Illustrated  in the Shinbaku Books 2014 publication “Massacres in Manchuria: Sino Japanese War Prints 1894-1895”, edited by Jack Hunter,  page 72.

 

 
   
 
 
 
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