1918. Item #89142
[Japanese Toys おもちゃ]
Kawasaki Kyosen 川崎巨泉, artist
Omocha Jūnishi-shi おもちゃ十二支 [Japanese Toys of the Zodiac]
[Osaka: Darumaya だるまや, Taisho 7 ]
Bound into worn printed publisher's covers, with a printed paper title label, in folding album format 28.2 x 21.3 cm, so the double page prints are twice that size. The cover has a design of a half circle representing half of the Japanese zodiac signs in Japanese text. Inside front cover and front free endpaper has embossed, light red Daruma dolls. Initial pages with Japanese calligraphy and two hanko. 12 double page color woodblock printed illustrations, covering the 12 signs of the Zodiac, and presenting the most important children's dolls and toys for each animal are in order of the 12 year cycle: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig.
Each double page print has about 10-15 brightly colored, overlapping designs, as if the toys of various sizes are laid out on the floor, ready to be enjoyed. Each has small, printed text with city, area or country of origin; such as Nagoya, Osaka, Germany or Russia; time period, such as Edo Period; material, such as rubber; or other identifying detail. One flat, rectangular card decorated with a dragon is labeled as Unsun Karuta ウンスンかるた, an Edo Period Portuguese card game whose name comes from the Portuguese words “Un” or “One” and “Sun” or “best.” Each double page woodcut also has a printed signature and hanko and the final page has a large, printed signature and hanko.
After drawings by Kawasaki Kyosen 川崎巨泉 (1877-1942), one of the most important experts on children's folk toys and dolls of the 20th century. Housed in a custom made, bronze fabric-covered, clasped chitsu case with a printed title slip. Important and quite uncommon. Some dirt staining to pages, otherwise in good condition.