Genpei Wars Battle Scene. Rakuto Koryosai.

Genpei Wars Battle Scene
Collection MAE RAS: № 13-38
Image ID: 1241849271
Museum inventory number:
№ 13-38
Genpei Wars Battle Scene
Rakuto Koryosai
silk textile, Japanese washigami paper, Japanese watercolours, glue
painting on silk, weaving
Dimensions, cm:
mounting 60.8 × 117.7; painting 41.6 × 105.5
Overmeer Fisscher, van Iohann Friedrich, Foreign corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences in St.Petersburg
This painting is an illustration to one of the episodes of a medieval military tale “Heike monogatari” (“A Tale of the Heike”) and depicts the climax of the first battle in the Genpei Gassen (War between the Minamoto [Gen] and the Taira [Hei], which lasted from 1180 to 1185. This battle known as “Battle of Uji” took place on June 1, 1180 at the bridge over the Uji river. The Taira troops (at the left) were attacking the bridge, defended by the followers of Prince Mochihito and his allies – the samurai of Minamoto Yorimasa and warrior monks (at the right). This painting depicts the moment when the Miidera temple warrior monk Tsutsui no Jomyo Meishu challenges the Taira troops climbing the girders of the bridge. At that moment another monk named Ichirai Hoshi (Master Ichirai) leaped over his head to engage the Taira samurai. Upstream we see Taira warriors on horseback trying to swim across the river for a flank attack on Minamoto Yorimasa's troops. Note: "Rakuto Koryosai" is a “pseudonym” that conceals the artist's real name. This painting can be considered a Kyoto school masterpiece.