Hirazumi, Senan: MOROKOSHI (TODO) KUNMO ZUI. (An Illustrated Encyclopaedia on Things Chinese). Kyoto, mid 19th C. 32; 32; 34; 35; 28; 26; 40 folded leaves. B/w woodcut illustrations throughout. 7 vols. 22x16 cm. Stitched.
An illustrated encyclopaedia on things Chinese, first published in 1719. Prefaces dated 1718 and 1719. Published in a number of editions, this is an undated mid 19th-century version. The whole work is illustrated throughout with copious amounts of black-and-white woodcut illustrations, originally done by Tachibana Morikuni, showing a huge variety of subject matter, including mythical figures and beasts, grouped as follows. Introduction and 14 parts (kan) complete in 7 physical volumes.
Vol. 1: Introduction and kan 1: Astronomy (Tenmon); Vol. 2: kan 2: Geography (Kiri) and kan 3: Palaces and Architecture (Kyushitsu); Vol. 3: kan 4 and 5 Portraiture (Jinbutsu) in 2 parts; Vol. 4: kan 6: Occupations (Jinji) and kan 7: Utensils (Kiyo); Vol. 5: kans 8 and 9 Utensils continued; Vol. 6: kan 10: Clothing and Ritual Paraphernalia (Ifuku Gisei) and kan 11: Flowers and Plants (Somoku); Vol. 7: kan 12: Flowers and Plants (Somoku) continued; kan 13: Birds and Beasts (Kinju); kan 14: Marine Life and Pests (Gyokaichu).
The work demonstrates the ongoing influence of China on Japanese culture. It has been said to be a primer for schoolchildren but the content of certain sections appear far too advanced for this to be the case. Judging from the images, it is likely that the original edition was influenced by the Chinese work 'Sancai Tuhui'. The title can also be read as Todo Kunmo Zui. See Kerlen 1076 for the 1719 edition.
With the original covers and labels. In very good condition with minimal wear. In Japanese. Scarce.
Images available on request.
Subjects: Rare Books Illustrated Books
Available, as of: 20/05/2019
Was item 371 in printed List 195.
Record produced by Hanshan Tang Books, www.hanshan.com.