The episodetells of a banquet hosted by the courtier Minamoto no Tōru (822–895) at his Kyoto residence Kawara-no-in on the banks of the Kamo River. At the end of the tenth month, with autumn foliage at its peak, Tōru invited imperial princes to a banquet that lasted all night. The following morning, an old man composed a poem in which he praised Kawara-no-in by comparing it to Shiogama (Salt Cauldron) Bay in Mutsu Province in northeastern Japan, considered one of the most beautiful sites in the entire archipelago. Here, Tōru is depicted in a frontal pose, and the picture wittily portrays his grand villa as a rustic farmhouse. This poem sheet was formerly in the collection of Masuda Takashi (1848–1938).
Shiogama, Tales of Ise, episode 81
Tawaraya Sōtatsu (act. ca. 1600–40)
Japan, early to mid-17th century
Poetry sheet mounted as hanging scroll
Ink, colors, and gold on paper
Tokyo University of the Arts