Sino-Japanese War 1894-95: The Yellow Sea
 
 
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.This print tells of the divine assistance Admiral Kabayama Sukenori received during the battle of the Yellow Sea. Two doves supposedly flew over the fleet and an eagle alighted on the topgallant mast of the Japanese warship Takachiho, remaining there throughout the fighting, and the flocks of crows common to the Hiroshima region appeared at the battle site, circling over the enemy position. The eagle was later presented to the emperor, who named it after the warship. It is said that the eagle was kept at an imperial zoo in Tokyo.
The eagle as an omen has a precedent in an ancient Japanese legend of divine assistance. According to a traditional myth, the legendary first emperor of Japan, Jimmu, while settling the territory that later became Japan, was surrounded by the enemy. Suddenly, a golden eagle perched atop his bow, blinding the enemy and leading him to victory.
The name of the battleship Takachiho also comes from a legend of imperial mythology. A descendant of the sun goddess was supposed to have come down from heaven upon the mountain Takachiho in ancient Japan, commencing the reign of the divine land. (Relates to DFJN2014PRJW0007)
From  “Impressions of the Front by Shumpei Okamoto”, p.28. Catalogue Numbers 31 and 32.

Collections :      Philadelphia Museum of Art

References :     Illustrated in the 1983 Philadelphia Museum of Art publication “Impressions of the Front”, Catalogue number 32. p.28.

 

 
     
 
 
 
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