The Tale of Shuten Doji

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Historical period(s)
Edo period, 17th century
Ink, color, gold and silver on paper
H x W (overall): 32.5 x 1543.5 cm (12 13/16 x 607 11/16 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view


Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, Shuten Doji, Tale of Shuten Doji, WWII-era provenance
Provenance research underway.

In this second scroll of the set of three, the samurai persuade Shuten Doji’s guardians to admit them to his castle, where they allay his suspicion and he invites them to eat and drink. After entering Shuten Doji’s castle, the samurai, disguised as traveling Buddhist priests, accept the giant’s hospitality and offer him the potent sake they have brought with them, which sedates the monster. The samurai await their opportunity to attack Shuten Doji, who transforms from human to demonic form as he drinks.

Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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