Eshi no soshi (picture scroll) (絵師草紙)

Eshi no soshi (picture scroll) is a Japanese emakimono (an illustrated scroll). It was made during the Kamakura period, in the fourteenth century.
One scroll
The story and picture consist of three columns. It is displayed in the Sannomaru Shozokan (The Museum of Imperial Collections).

Since Kotobagaki (captions) began with `朝恩なればかたじけなく悦事かぎりなし、此よし家にかへりてかたりければ', assumed to have been continued from the previous story, it is not an independent story.

According to Kotobagaki (captions), an Eshi painter promoted to Iyo no Kami (Governor of Iyo Province) thanks to the imperial blessing or favor; the painter's whole family was joyful and held a celebrating feast, but it was a dream that lasted only for a minute. Unfortunately, his chigyo no tochi (territory) was taken by a stranger, and he fell into poverty as the instructions from the imperial court related to this incident were not effective.

The scenes including a feast (a drinking party) were described with a bold touch, and the expressions of people were alive, evoking a bit of obscenities though; the painter must have a good painting skill.

Since expressive descriptions are somewhat similar to "Kitano Tenjin Engi" (an illustrated history of Kitano shrine) of Kitano Tenmangu Shrine, it is believed that the painter was FUJIWARA no Nobuzane.

An expert in old writing contributed it to the Edo bakufu around the Koka Period, and it was believed that it had been burn out during the Meiji Restoration, however it turned out that it was secretly deposited under Prince Tokugawa. In 1887, it was dedicated to the inner palace.

[Original Japanese]