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Tsuba with Watanabe no Tsuna Fighting the Demon at Rashomon
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Tsuba with Watanabe no Tsuna Fighting the Demon at Rashomon


Description Exhibitions Provenance Inscription Credit
Description This tsuba shows Watanabe no Tsuna, a warrior who lived in the late 10th and early 11th century. One stormy night, he lay in wait at the Rashomon Gate in Kyoto to wait for one of the last demons left in the city. Very late at night, he felt something tugging at his helmet. Striking out with his sword, he cut off the demon's arm. The demon ran away and Tsuna kept the arm locked in an iron box. On the tsuba, the oni can be seen pulling at Tsuna's helmet. The storm is shown through the swirling clouds at the top of the tsuba. A sign that had been knocked over in the wind lays at the bottom of the tsuba. On the back is Tsuna's horse running away.
Exhibitions
  • The Nature of Loyalty: Japanese Warrior Prints of the Nineteenth Century. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1989.
Provenance Henry Walters, Baltimore [date and mode of acquistion unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Inscriptions [Signature] 筑山軒 元壽; [Translation] Chikuzanken Mototoshi (kao)
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters

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Period
1st half 19th century (late Edo)
Medium
shakudo, gold, copper
(Arms & Armor)
Accession Number
51.138
Measurements
H: 2 11/16 in. (6.9 cm)
Geographies
Location Within Museum
Not On View

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