Item ID: 7728 Keiseikai toranomaki [or] Tosei toranomaki [Pledged in Love to One, Bought by Another: A Guide]. author TANISHI KINGYO.

A Blockbuster & a Tearjerker

Keiseikai toranomaki [or] Tosei toranomaki [Pledged in Love to One, Bought by Another: A Guide].

One double-page black & white woodcut. 48 folding leaves. Small 8vo, orig. green wrappers (wrappers a little tired), orig. block-printed title label on upper cover (label soiled), new stitching. [Edo]: Preface dated 1778.

First edition of this rare sharebon, stories revolving around humor and entertainments in the pleasure quarters, most popular in the 1770s and 1780s. This novel, a real “tearjerker,” is one of the masterpieces about the Yoshiwara pleasure quarters (see Cecilia Segawa Seigle, Yoshiwara: The Glittering World of the Japanese Courtesan, p. 141). The novel was a blockbuster of its time, focusing on the irreconcilability of romantic love and societal norms (see J. Scott Miller’s review of Jonathan E. Zwicker’s Practices of the Sentimental Imagination: Melodrama, the Novel, and the Social Imaginary in Nineteenth-Century Japan [Harvard University Asia Center: 2006], online resource).

Tanishi Kingyo (fl. 1770s-80s), whose name can be translated “River Snail Goldfish,” was a practicing physician in Edo. He is one of the founders of the ninjobon genre.

The double-page woodcut depicts the courtesan Segawa and her true love, Gogo.

Very good copy, preserved in a chitsu.

Price: $1,950.00

Item ID: 7728

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