PRONUNCIATION: Ehon Toyotomi Kunkôki
MATERIAL: Woodblock Printed
TYPE: Print Book (Set)
DIMENSIONS: 6 1/4 X 9 inches (closed)
COMPONENTS: 10 volumes complete; 570 pages, 174 of which have fine woodblock prints by Kuniyosh
NOTES: Waseda University in Tokyo has the complete set, which they have illustrated in entirety online.

After about 30 minutes of searching, I could find no other complete copies. Even the National Diet Library in Japan has only parts 8 & 9. Here is a good English-language description of the publication (by Steve Waldman, who is offering volume 7). Actually, the Library of Congress appears to have most of parts 1-7, with a few missing volumes here and there, listed under the title Ehon Toyotoku kunkoki; they also have something titledPictorial biography of Toyotomi Hideyoshi: The Unifier of Japan, published in Hollywood in 1975 – not sure what this is.

Other U.S. locations found on WorldCat include Cornell University Library (they have 1857 edition, parts 1-5 and part 6 vols 2-10); 1917 reprint (vols 1-17 only) and 1975 edition); and Harvard-Yenching Library (listed as 5 volumes in 50 books, so incomplete, publ 1857-1860).

Note that only the frontispieces to the volumes are printed in color; the text and most of the illustrations are monochrome.

Conclusion: very rare. Kuniyoshi one of the best artists of his age. This would be a great book for us at the Portland Art Museum, a wonderful enhancement to our collection of Japanese prints and printed books!

Maribeth Graybill, Ph.D.
The Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Curator of Asian Art
Portland Art Museum

He reports: “AVAILABILITY: A worldwide catalog search outside of Japan finds 1 copy for the 7 volumes published in 1857 (at Library of Congress).”
Language: Japanese
REFERENCE EXTERNAL LINKS: Complete set, Waseda University in Tokyo


ITEM ID: 1220
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Part 5 of the Illustrated Account of Toyotomi Hideyoshi

Decade: 1850s
Century: 19th (1801-1900)

Original Japanese woodblock print book set by Kuniyoshi, which contain depictions of Samurai fighting; Military technology; Decapitations; etc. These 10 volumes are Part 5 of Ehon Toyotomi kunkôki, an illustrated and somewhat embellished account of the career of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, one of the most brilliant generals in Japan’s history. The complete publication consists of nice parts of 10 volumes each, for a total of 90 volumes.

Name: Kuniyoshi
Type: Illustrator
Artists Dates: January 1, 1798 – April 14, 1861
Artist Information: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (Japanese: 歌川 国芳, [ɯtaɡawa kɯɲiꜜjoɕi]; ) was one of the last great masters of the Japanese ukiyo-e style of woodblock prints and painting. He was a member of the Utagawa school. The range of Kuniyoshi's subjects included many genres: landscapes, beautiful women, Kabuki actors, cats, and mythical animals. He is known for depictions of the battles of legendary samurai heroes. His artwork incorporated aspects of Western representation in landscape painting and caricature.