Komachi Praying for Rain


Komachi Praying for Rain
Print   (Part of the set: Masterpiece Ukiyo-e Collection - Part 2)

Utagawa Kunisada


Print is Public Domain; Photography is:   Creative Commons License


Titled Ôju Mitate Amagoi ("By Request, a Parody of Komachi Praying for Rain"), this print depicts a famous scene from the seven famous episodes of the life of the famous poet Ono no Komachi, a popular theme for bijin-ga prints.

Usually in this scene, having been called by the Emperor to provide a verse to bring forth rain during a drought, Komachi recites her poem, lights some incense, and tosses the poem into a pond, initiating a thunderstorm. However, in this print we see Komachi with an umbrella, a piece of paper (perhaps her poem) attached (or stuck?) to the inner side of it. Perhaps it started to rain all of a sudden and she had to make a quick retreat.

Her hairline has been incredibly finely carved, and her eye makeup has been carefully printed.

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