Bravery Matched with the Twelve (Zodiac) Signs: Tiger and Kashiwade no Omi Hatebe

Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi 歌川国芳 (1798-1861)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, ca. 1840
Woodblock print; ink and color on paper
H x W (overall): 36.6 x 12.5 cm (14 7/16 x 4 15/16 in)
Credit Line
The Anne van Biema Collection
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Woodblock print

Anne van Biema collection, Eastern zodiac, Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, snow, tiger, ukiyo-e, warrior, waterfall, WWII-era provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable

The tiger in this print is paired with the warrior Kashiwade no Omi Hatebe, who is recorded in the Chronicle of Japan (Nihon shoki, 720), the earliest official history of Japan. Here, as an envoy to Korea, he attacks the tiger who killed his child. His exaggerated facial expression and pose echo the style of staged combat in kabuki performances.

Published References
  • Robert T. Singer. The Life of Animals in Japanese Art. Exh. cat. Princeton, New Jersey. p 48, fig 10C.
  • Ann Yonemura, et al. Masterful Illusions: Japanese Prints from the Anne van Biema Collection. Seattle and Washington. cat. 82, pp. 214-5, 220-21.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
SI Usage Statement

Usage Conditions Apply

There are restrictions for re-using this image. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

The information presented on this website may be revised and updated at any time as ongoing research progresses or as otherwise warranted. Pending any such revisions and updates, information on this site may be incomplete or inaccurate or may contain typographical errors. Neither the Smithsonian nor its regents, officers, employees, or agents make any representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or timeliness of the information on the site. Use this site and the information provided on it subject to your own judgment. The Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery welcome information that would augment or clarify the ownership history of objects in their collections.