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Murase Taiitsu (1803-1881)
Nanga / Bunjin
Fujitsuna Aoto, the story of the lost cash
Signed: Taiitsu Rôjin heidai
Seals: Taiitsu Rôjin sanzetsu & Hakusetsu (top)
Technique: sumi on paper 132,1 x 54
Mounting: Cream paper
183,5 x 66,4
Condition: Original mounting. Some very faint waterstains, otherwise good


A torch of fifty sen was used to dredge up ten,
Immediately everyone spoke about such foolishness.
This was an official matter, whether the lord knew of it or not.
He maintained that it was worthwhile to spend thousands.
Comp. Sôjin ’83 p. 5

The minister Fujitsuna Aoto was celebrated for his righteousness and disinterestedness. He is a character from the novel Azuma kagami, written at the end of the 13th century. In 1812 his story was used by Takizawa Bakin in Aoto Fujitsuna moryōan (illustrated by Hokusai).
Once, Aoto dropped ten sen in a river. In order to regain the money, he spent 50 sen on men and torches. He told his friends, who did not understand the excessive expenditure, that the 50 had benefited others; for this reason his actions could not be called unprofitable (Joly).