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Yoroboshi from the album Nō Sugata


 Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Yoroboshi 弱法師 (The Priest with the Faltering Tread)

from the album Nō Sugata

by Matsuno Sōfū, 1931-1934

Nōga taikan, Semimaru

IHL Cat. #1596

About This Print and Nō Sugata

Source: based on documentation kindly provided by Claus-Peter Schultz.
From volume four of a twenty volume album titled Nō Sugata consisting of text, photographs, illustrations and color woodblock prints published by Unsōdō Publishing over the period 1931-1934.  The woodblock prints were created by Matsuno Sōfū (1899-1963), the photographs by Genzō Kitazumi (1898-1982), the album's text was written by Kanze Sakon (1895-1939), the 24th head (sōke) of the Kanze School and Nō actor, and the preface was written by Sasakawa Rinfu (active 1920s-1930s).

The Play - Yoroboshi

Source: A Guide to No, P.G. O'Neill, Hinoki Shoten, 1929, p. 217-218.

By Motomasa
Fourth Group
All schools


Waki - Takayasu no Michitoshi
Kyōgen - his servant
Shite - Shuntoku-maru

Believing some gossip he heard about his son Shuntoku, Michitoshi turned him out of his house.  Deeply regretting his cruelty now, he goes on a pilgrimage to the Tennō-ji temple and there sees his son again - but he has become a beggar and having lost his sight as well, is known as 'the priest with the faltering tread.'  He sings a song about the temple and then, when the other people go and leave the two of them alone, Michitoshi tells his son who he is and, full of happiness at having found him again, takes him by the art to lead him home.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #1596
 Title Yoroboshi 弱法師 (The Priest with the Faltering Tread)
 Series/Album Nō Sugata 能寿賀多
 Matsuno Sōfū (1899-1963)
 Seal 奏風 Sōfū seal beneath signature (see above)
 Date 1931-1934
 Edition first and only
 Publisher Unsōdō Publishing
 Carver unknown
 Printer unknown
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition good - staining along left and top edge from mounting residue on verso; light toning
 Genre nishiki-e; Nōgaku zue [Noh play picture]
 Format aiban
 H x W Paper 11 3/4 x 9 9/16 in. (29.8 x 24.3 cm)
 H x W Image 11 5/8 x 9 7/16 in. (29.5 x 24 cm)
 Collections This Print
 Reference Literature