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Koume Embankment, No. 104 from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo

Utagawa Hiroshige

Asian Art

We stand looking north from the embankment of the Yotsugi-dōri Canal near its beginning in Koume village. There is scarcely any sign of productive activity on this bright winter's day. No boats are in sight. The tone is set rather by the two children playing with puppies in the immediate foreground to the right—much less concerned about the cold, it would seem, than the two bundled women crossing the bridge. The trees with withered leaves in the foreground to the right are black alders (hannoki). The black alder grew quickly in this wet, low-lying area and was useful not only to prevent erosion on the canal embankment but also to hang rice for drying after the fall harvest.

MEDIUM Woodblock print
  • Place Made: Japan
  • DATES 2nd month of 1857
    PERIOD Edo Period, Ansei Era
    DIMENSIONS Sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 1/4 in. (36 x 23.5 cm) Image: 13 3/8 x 8 3/4 in. (34 x 22.2 cm)  (show scale)
    MARKINGS No publisher's seal visible, probably lost when left margin was trimmed.
    SIGNATURE Hiroshige-ga
    ACCESSION NUMBER 30.1478.104
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Anna Ferris
    PROVENANCE Prior to 1930, provenance not yet documented; by 1930, acquired by Anna Ferris of Summit, NJ; 1930, gift of Anna Ferris to the Brooklyn Museum.
    Provenance FAQ
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION A scene of the embankment of the Yotsugi-dori Canal in Koume Village on a bright winter's day. At the right two children are playing with puppies and also to the right are black alder trees, also seen around the farmhouses in the distance. These trees were useful not only for preventing erosion on the embankment, but also for hanging rice for drying after the fall harvest. The three log and earth bridges in this print are Hachitanme Bridge, Koshin Bridge, and Shichihonmatsu Bridge. Today a road has replaced this segment of the canal. A similar view of this print is in the "Ehon Edo Miyage," volume VII.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION Utagawa Hiroshige (Japanese, 1797–1858). Koume Embankment, No. 104 from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo, 2nd month of 1857. Woodblock print, Sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 1/4 in. (36 x 23.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Anna Ferris, 30.1478.104 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 30.1478.104_PS20.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 30.1478.104_PS20.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2023
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