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Oiwa the Lantern Ghost – after Kuniyoshi 1910s

A two postcard diptych, based on a woodblock print by Utagawa Kuniyoshi entitled “Scene from the play Yotsuya Kaidan” (1847-8) showing the ghost of Oiwa in the guise of a beautiful maiden, catching fireflies on a summer night.


The final Act of the original version of the play begins with a dream sequence in which the disgraced hero Tamiya Jemon dreams that he is once again a samurai. In his dream, he encounters a beautiful young maiden in a summer pavilion and immediately falls in love with her, failing to realise that the maiden is Oiwa, the spirit of his murdered wife, who drags him down to hell.


The original woodblock print:

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Taken on May 28, 2012