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Digital Archive of Toyo Bunko Rare Books

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0070 Innermost Asia : vol.2
Innermost Asia : vol.2 / Page 70 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000187
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Kao. or. Circular bronze mirror, with scalloped edge, and handle at one side ; cast. Obv. blank. Rev. Edge with flat border, raised. Centre, design of duck on water (?) with bank and flowers, all in very low relief. Junction of handle with plaque, a lotus half open, the tang forming stem. Well preserved. Diam. 2r". Thickness i". Tang r" long. Pl. LXXI.

Kao. 02. Jade ' Netsuki'; light buff, in form of reclining dog, with rather pug face, bulging eyes, large ears and bushy tail. Forelegs and shoulders broken away. Fairly well carved and polished. Jr x r 6". Pl. LXXI.

Kao. 03. Bronze pendant, cast, with loop for hanging. Pear-shaped with volute in relief R. and L., and calyx spreading below, from which issues a bud. Bold relief. Back hollow. 2" x X. Pl. LXXI.

Kao. 04. Bronze ornament, T-shaped with raised boss at crossing. Details smothered in corrosion. Back hollow.


Kao. 05. Fr. of block-print on paper. Subject : two Chinese male dancers or jugglers, $ to L., perform, presumably to spectators, on narrow trestle bench drawn in perspective receding at about 3o° from R. to L. Each end of bench is supported on two thin legs diverging downward and joined by two rails.

(a) Figure at near end of bench is in dancing pose of great though tense animation. L. foot is planted on bench, R. leg drawn up sharply with knee directed outwards to R. and foot towards inner side of L. thigh. Head held down and forward between hunched shoulders. L. arm drawn up tightly, elbow projecting outward to L. and hand behind back. R. arm thrust vigorously straight down and slightly across body ; fist clenched and turned inwards to girdle. Above R. shoulder projects hilt and part of blade of Chinese sword, touched with blue, which is perhaps held by lower end of blade in L. hand behind back.

Head carries elaborate ornament composed of close-fitting narrow metal (?) coronet with eight-petalled rosette in front, partly surrounded by half-hoop of detached beads. From top of rosette springs a real (?) pink chrysanthemum. Rising from, and attached to, coronet, are spreading flat quadrangular panels of which two are visible, joined at their edges, forming a high polygonal. Crown (cf. Vai§ravana's headdress, Ser., iv. Pl. LXXII) worn rakishly. Each panel contains a vague device and is black-bordered ; studded with beads ; other beads stand out from corners and side edges. At R. of face is large bunch of pink flowers (peony ?).

Coat is loose fitting with full skirts to just above knees, and is fastened across body kimono fashion. From L. armpit to R. side of waist is a band of fret ornament with thin blue line at upper edge ; below, at about distance of

width of fret band and parallel to it, another partly visible. Above, crossing breast, is broad band of four widely spaced

seven-petalled rosettes with pink centres surrounded by blue line. A fifth similar rosette appears above, at front

of R. breast, being probably part of another band ; it is divided from first flower band by two parallel lines. Over each shoulder a band of fret.

Sleeves, rather short, are full at upper part, narrowing to close-fitting white (?) cuffs, rolled back. Enclosed

palmettes with blue field form gauntlet shape decoration.

Thin girdle encircles waist and below ; round hips is broad blue and white banded sash, an end of which hangs swaying

in front of L. leg nearly to ankle. This free end is decorated at its upper part with cloud scroll or dragon and below with transverse lozenge border from which hangs long fringe with three rows of knots at its upper end.

Short thin scarf is wound loosely round neck, grey ends hanging at either side of breast. Loose pink pyjamas have

their ends tucked into tops of soft Chinese boots. Boots have band of fret ornament bordered by blue lines round tops, below which is plain band. Uppers decorated with sketchy palmettes on blue ground. Goloshes panelled blue with white borders.

Face is youthful, of Chinese type with full cheeks, narrow forehead and eyebrows placed high and sloping well up at outer ends. L. ear large and prominent. Face painted with pink body-colour shaded with pink.

(b) Second figure, at farther end of bench, is standing on his doubled fists placed close together, his back towards

spectators and head turned outward in same direction. Legs close together, curving over to maintain balance. It is the ordinary tumbler's pose when standing on the hands, with the difference of the fists being doubled, throwing weight on knuckles.

Costume is adapted to the role. It consists of short grey tunic shaded blue at edges, confined by girdle at

waist ; short sleeves with rolled back cuffs, the outer

side of sleeve laced and ornamented with row of tags or buttons as on a toreador's jacket. Loose-fitting pyjamas

patterned with five-pointed palm or bamboo leaves, semé, and tucked into boots similar to those of first figure, but differently ornamented. Point of sword projects from waist, upwards to R. On head is bound a grey cloth or cap, which falls backward like long ' smuggler's cap '.

Ears covered by long erect artificial pink ears or brushlike tufts of hair, such as are sometimes worn by French

clowns. Face is more rugged than that of his companion ; eyes less oblique, nose broader, mouth and chin larger ; painted pale pink body-colour, shaded with pink.

An outline block only seems to have been used, printed in black with the fine freedom in the quality of line usual in Chinese prints. Body-colour of faces has been laid over