Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Gentleman Taking Leave of His Lady on a Veranda

Artist:
Suzuki Harunobu (Japanese, 1725–1770)
Period:
Edo period (1615–1868)
Culture:
Japan
Medium:
Polychrome woodblock print; ink and color on paper
Dimensions:
H. 11 in. (27.9 cm); W. 8 1/8 in. (20.6 cm)
Classification:
Prints
Credit Line:
H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929
Accession Number:
JP1629
Not on view
Although a seemingly incidental element of the scene, the cock and hen that recapitulate the affection expressed in the human sphere signal a number of poetic sources, including one of the most touching episodes in the tenth-century "Tales of Ise" (chapter 22). Knowing viewers of this couple on a veranda, who gaze wistfully at each other as the man prepares to take his leave, would recall the happy denouement of one of the main narratives of separated lovers in this classic cycle of poetic tales:

They talked of what had happened and of the future,
and he recited,

Would I be satisfied if I count
a thousand nights as one,
and sleep with you eight thousand nights?

She replied,

Were we to make a thousand autumn nights into one,
There would still be things to say
at cockcrow.

From then on he visited her more faithfully than ever.
Signature: Suzuki Harunobu ga
Related Objects

The Gossips

Artist: Suzuki Harunobu (Japanese, 1725–1770) Date: ca. 1767 Medium: Polychrome woodblock print; ink and color on paper Accession: JP868 On view in:Not on view

On the Veranda

Artist: Suzuki Harunobu (Japanese, 1725–1770) Date: 1769 or 1770 Medium: Polychrome woodblock print; ink and color on paper Accession: JP566 On view in:Not on view

Mother and Son

Artist: Suzuki Harunobu (Japanese, 1725–1770) Date: ca. 1769 Medium: Polychrome woodblock print; ink and color on paper Accession: JP565 On view in:Not on view

A Young Man Standing before a Garden Fence

Artist: Suzuki Harunobu (Japanese, 1725–1770) Date: ca. 1763 Medium: Polychrome woodblock print; ink and color on paper Accession: JP668 On view in:Not on view

Young Woman Climbing a Ladder

Artist: Suzuki Harunobu (Japanese, 1725–1770) Date: ca. 1768 Medium: Polychrome woodblock print; ink and color on paper Accession: JP670 On view in:Not on view