Kobayakawa Takakage debating with the goblin priest (Tengu) on Mount Hiko

Kobayakawa Takakage (1553-1597) was a retainer of the daimyo(feudal lord) Toyotomi Hideyoshi (1536-1598), who rose in power in the period 1582-1598 during his military quests to reunify Japan. Takakage led several successful military campaigns and became Hideyoshi's chief minister.

During the conquest of northern Kyushu in the 1580s he camped on the slopes of the sacred Mount Hiko. Legend has it that a wind suddenly arose and before him appeared a long-nosed goblin (tengu) dressed in the garb of a mountain priest (yamabushi).

Here, as the wind parts the mist, we see Takakage's followers overcome with fear and astonishment as the general (dressed in green) and the goblin begin their dialogue.

Kobayakawa Takakage debating with the goblin priest (Tengu) on Mount Hiko Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI
Japanese 1839-1892
Kobayakawa Takakage debating with the goblin priest (Tengu) on Mount Hiko
from the New forms of thirty-six ghosts series
1992 Tokyo, Japan

colour woodblock, second edition
33.8 x 23.1 cm (image)
Purchased, 1992 (AS18-1992)

Kobayakawa Takakage debating with the goblin priest (Tengu) on Mount Hiko

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