Comments - During the Edo era, foreign trade with Japan was restricted to the port of Nagasaki. Prints of exotic foreigners and ships relating to Nagasaki are known as Nagasaki-e or Nagasaki woodblock prints, and were likely produced as souvenirs for travelers. According to the Printing Museum in Tokyo, Nagasaki prints were primarily produced between 1780 and 1830, although some were published up until the end of the Tokugawa Shogunate. This fascinating and rare print shows a Chinese ship with sales flying. The writing at upper right translates as "Chinese boat/Sundays and Thursdays/Nanking, 340 ri/Peking 505 ri." Perhaps the days of the week refer to days when ships from Nanking and Peking regularly arrived in port. During the Edo era, a ri was a length of distance about 2.44 miles long. A terrific black and white image, with some hand-applied color in gray and gold. There is a signature in red ink near the top of the page which may read "Mitsuda," but we're not sure. A great choice for a collector interested in the early days of foreign trade with Japan.
Artist - Edo era artist (unsigned)
Image Size - 11 1/8" x 15 1/2"
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Small loss and tear at edge, stitching holes at right edge, a few small holes, repaired. Toning, creasing, slight soiling. Please see photos for details. Good overall.