Item ID: 8051 Manuscript on paper, entitled on first leaf “Goyuijo [gohozoiri] hyakkajo [“The One Hundred Articles of Testimony”]. Ieyasu TOKUGAWA.
Manuscript on paper, entitled on first leaf “Goyuijo [gohozoiri] hyakkajo [“The One Hundred Articles of Testimony”].
Manuscript on paper, entitled on first leaf “Goyuijo [gohozoiri] hyakkajo [“The One Hundred Articles of Testimony”].
Manuscript on paper, entitled on first leaf “Goyuijo [gohozoiri] hyakkajo [“The One Hundred Articles of Testimony”].

Of “Supreme Interest”

Manuscript on paper, entitled on first leaf “Goyuijo [gohozoiri] hyakkajo [“The One Hundred Articles of Testimony”].

17 folding leaves. 8vo (265 x 191 mm), orig. patterned wrappers with paintings on each cover, old stitching. On the antepenultimate page, in a later hand using red ink in trans.: “Yakushiji Temple Horinin…copied August 1795.”

An important text, which has been shrouded in secrecy for several centuries. Manuscript copies, such as the present example, were quietly made, but the Legacy of Ieyasu was not published until the early 19th century.

Ieyasu Tokugawa (1543-1616) “left behind him a document, called the Legacy of Ieyasu, which to those desirous of studying the character and motives of the founder of the Tokugawa dynasty possesses a supreme interest. Some doubt has been thrown by Japanese critics on the authenticity of this composition. It has been asserted that it was not the work of Ieyasu and therefore not worthy of the reverence in which it has been held. But whether the Legacy was originally composed by him or approved and sanctioned by him, matters little for our purpose. It dates from the time of the founding of the Tokugawa shogunate, and has been an unimpeachable authority during all its history. One of the singular features in the disposition of the Legacy, to which Professor Grigsby directs attention, was the secrecy in which it was kept. The original was preserved in Kyoto and was never seen, while an authenticated copy was kept at the shogun’s court in Yedo, and once a year was open to the inspection of all above a certain rank…

“The Legacy of Ieyasu consists of one hundred chapters, arranged without any attempt at logical order. Each chapter treats of a single, separate subject, and is usually of a very moderated length. As Professor Grigsby has pointed out: ‘Sixteen chapters consist of moral maxims and reflections; fifty-five are connected with politics and administrations; twenty-two refer to legal matters, and in seven Ieyasu relates episodes of his own personal history.’ The moral maxims are quoted chiefly from the works of the Chinese sages, Confucius and Mencius. While the collection on the whole has a military aspect, and plainly encourages and promotes the well-being of a military class, yet we see in it the mild and peaceful nature of Ieyasu.”–David Christie Murray, Japan, p. 151.

Our manuscript, written in sumi (black) ink, contains a number of notes and additional commentary in red ink, with a few further modern annotations in blue ink. The manuscript label on the upper cover states “Momijiyama gohozoiri hyakkajo hisho” [“The One Hundred Articles of Testimony kept in the collections of the Shogun in Edo, a Secret Text”]. Throughout the manuscript, an annotator, writing in red ink, has made a number of corrections and additions to the text. An inscription in blue ink on the first leaf states that the red ink annotations derive from a comparison with the manuscript at the Yakushiji Temple in Nara.

The upper wrapper has a lovely painting of Momijiyama and the surrounding landscape. The lower wrapper depicts another landscape of the area.

In very good condition. The wrappers and text have some worming, touching characters, but the text is legible.

Price: $2,500.00

Item ID: 8051

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