The Story of Tsu (Short writings - Japanese Stories)
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Sun Bin's treatise is the only known military text surviving from the Warring States period discovered in the twentieth century and bears the closest similarity to The Art of War of all surviving texts. Sun Tzu's Art of War has influenced many notable figures. The Chinese historian Sima Qian recounted that China's first historical emperor , Qin 's Shi Huangdi , considered the book invaluable in ending the time of the Warring States.
The work strongly influenced Mao's writings about guerrilla warfare , which further influenced communist insurgencies around the world. The Art of War was introduced into Japan c. AD and the book quickly became popular among Japanese generals. Through its later influence on Oda Nobunaga , Toyotomi Hideyoshi , and Tokugawa Ieyasu ,  it significantly affected the unification of Japan in the early modern era.
It remained popular among the Imperial Japanese armed forces. Ho Chi Minh translated the work for his Vietnamese officers to study. The Department of the Army in the United States, through its Command and General Staff College , has directed all units to maintain libraries within their respective headquarters for the continuing education of personnel in the art of war.
The Art of War is mentioned as an example of works to be maintained at each facility, and staff duty officers are obliged to prepare short papers for presentation to other officers on their readings. Daoist rhetoric is a component incorporated in the Art of War. According to Steven C.
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Combs in "Sun-zi and the Art of War : The Rhetoric of Parsimony",  warfare is "used as a metaphor for rhetoric, and that both are philosophically based arts. Daoism is the central principle in the Art of War. Combs compares ancient Daoist Chinese to traditional Aristotelian rhetoric, notably for the differences in persuasion. Daoist rhetoric in the art of war warfare strategies is described as "peaceful and passive, favoring silence over speech". Parsimonious behavior, which is highly emphasized in The Art of War as avoiding confrontation and being spiritual in nature, shapes basic principles in Daoism.
Mark McNeilly writes in Sun Tzu and the Art of Modern Warfare that a modern interpretation of Sun and his importance throughout Chinese history is critical in understanding China's push to becoming a superpower in the twenty-first century. Modern Chinese scholars explicitly rely on historical strategic lessons and The Art of War in developing their theories, seeing a direct relationship between their modern struggles and those of China in Sun Tzu's time.
There is a great perceived value in Sun Tzu's teachings and other traditional Chinese writers, which are used regularly in developing the strategies of the Chinese state and its leaders. Shannon presented his work at the United Soccer Coaches National Convention on January 15th, , to a full audience. See also: Hundred Schools of Thought. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Ancient Chinese strategist. For other people named Sun Tzu, see Sun Tzu disambiguation. For the Three Kingdoms period state, see Eastern Wu.
Main article: The Art of War. Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia New York: Columbia University Press. New Historian. Archived from the original on March 3, The Art of War. Wordsworth Editions Ltd December 5, Asian History. Classics of Strategy. William Duiker" , Sonshi.
Army c. These works were wildly popular and are still read by many young Japanese readers, much like the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew mysteries are popular mysteries for adolescents in the English-speaking world. Censors banned the story, apparently believing that the story would detract from the current war effort. This came as a blow to Ranpo, who relied on royalties from reprints for income.
Over the course of World War II , especially during the full-fledged war between Japan and the US that began after in , Edogawa was active in his local patriotic, neighborhood organization, and he wrote a number of stories about young detectives and sleuths that might be seen as in line with the war effort, but he wrote most of these under different pseudonyms as if to disassociate them with his legacy. In February , his family was evacuated from their home in Ikebukuro , Tokyo to Fukushima in northern Japan.
Edogawa remained until June, when he was suffering from malnutrition. Much of Ikebukuro was destroyed in Allied air raids and the subsequent fires that broke out in the city, but miraculously, the thick, earthen-walled warehouse which he used as his studio was spared, and still stands to this day beside the campus of Rikkyo University. In the postwar period, Edogawa dedicated a great deal of energy to promoting mystery fiction, both in terms of the understanding of its history and encouraging the production of new mystery fiction.
In addition, he wrote a large number of articles about the history of Japanese, European, and American mystery fiction. Many of these essays were published in book form. In the s, he and a bilingual translator collaborated for five years on a translation of Edogawa's works into English, published as Japanese Tales of Mystery and Imagination by Tuttle. Since the translator could speak but not read Japanese, and Edogawa could read but not write English, the translation was done aurally, with Edogawa reading each sentence aloud, then checking the written English.
Another of his interests, especially during the late s and s, was bringing attention to the work of his dear friend Jun'ichi Iwata — , an anthropologist who had spent many years researching the history of homosexuality in Japan. During the s, Edogawa and Iwata had engaged in a light-hearted competition to see who could find the most books about erotic desire between men. Edogawa dedicated himself to finding books published in the West and Iwata dedicated himself to finding books having to do with Japan.
Iwata died in , with only part of his work published, so Edogawa worked to have the remaining work on queer historiography published. In the postwar period, a large number of Edogawa's books were made into films. The interest in using Edogawa's literature as a departure point for creating films has continued well after his death.
Edogawa, who suffered from a variety of health issues, including atherosclerosis and Parkinson's disease , died from a cerebral hemorrhage at his home in His grave is at the Tama Cemetery in Fuchu , near Tokyo. A slumbrous feeling of delight stole over him as he listened,—a delight strangely mingled with sadness. He wondered how any woman could have learned to play thus,—wondered whether the player could be a woman,—wondered even whether he was hearing earthly music; for enchantment seemed to have entered into his blood with the sound of it.
The old woman then led him through many apartments to a large and well-lighted room in the rear of the house, and with many respectful salutations requested him to take the [pg ] place of honor accorded to guests of distinction. He was surprised by the stateliness of the chamber, and the curious beauty of its decorations. Presently some maid-servants brought refreshments; and he noticed that the cups and other vessels set before him were of rare and costly workmanship, and ornamented with a design indicating the high rank of the possessor.
More and more he wondered what noble person had chosen this lonely retreat, and what happening could have inspired the wish for such solitude. But the aged attendant suddenly interrupted his reflections with the question:. He had not told his name to the little miya-dzukai , and the manner of the inquiry startled him. When you came to the house, I thought that I knew your face; and I [pg ] asked your name only to clear away all doubt, before speaking of other matters.
I have some thing of moment to tell you.
Making It Memorable: Japanese Mnemonics for Dates and Kanji
Indeed, she thought so much that she became ill; and we have been very uneasy about her. For that reason I took means to find out your name and residence; and I was on the point of sending you a letter when—so unexpectedly! Now, to say how happy I am to see you is not possible; it seems almost too fortunate a happening to be true! Really I think that this meeting must have been brought about by the favor of Enmusubi-no-Kami,—that great God of Izumo who ties the knots of fortunate union. If the old woman had spoken the truth, an extraordinary chance was being offered to him.
Only a great passion could impel the daughter of a noble house to seek, of her own will, the affection of an obscure and masterless samurai, possessing neither wealth nor any sort of prospects. On the other hand, it was not in the honorable nature of the man to further his own interests by taking advantage of a feminine weakness. Moreover, the circumstances were disquietingly mysterious. Yet how to decline the proposal, so unexpectedly made, troubled him not a little. After a short silence, he replied:—.
Until now I have lived with my parents; and the matter of my marriage was never discussed by them. You must know that I am a poor samurai, without any patron among persons of rank; and I did not [pg ] wish to marry until I could find some chance to improve my condition. As to the proposal which you have done me the very great honor to make, I can only say that I know myself yet unworthy of the notice of any noble maiden. Perhaps you will feel no hesitation after you have seen her.
Deign now to come with me, that I may present you to her. She conducted him to another larger guest-room, where preparations for a feast had been made, and having shown him the place of honor, left him for a moment alone. Never had he dreamed of so beautiful a being. Light seemed to radiate from her presence, and to shine through her garments, as the light of the [pg ] moon through flossy clouds; her loosely flowing hair swayed about her as she moved, like the boughs of the drooping willow bestirred by the breezes of spring; her lips were like flowers of the peach besprinkled with morning dew.
Smiling, the aged woman turned to the fair one, who remained speechless, with downcast eyes and flushing cheeks, and said to her:—. So fortunate a happening could have been brought about only by the will of the high gods. To think of it makes me weep for joy. Maid-servants entered, bearing dishes and wine: the wedding feast was spread before the pair; and the pledges were given.
A gladness, beyond aught that he had ever known before, filled his heart—like a great silence.
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But gradually he recovered his wonted calm; and thereafter he found himself able to converse without embarrassment. Of the wine he partook freely; and he ventured to speak, in a self-depreciating but merry way, about the doubts and fears that had oppressed him. Meanwhile the bride remained still as moonlight, never lifting her eyes, and replying only by a blush or a smile when he addressed her.
And ever since entering here, I have been wondering why this noble household should have chosen so lonesome a place of sojourn At this utterance, a shadow passed over the kindly face of the old woman; and the bride, who had yet hardly spoken, turned pale, and appeared to become painfully anxious.
After some moments of silence, the aged woman responded:—. But in another instant the icy chill had passed; and the charm returned, and seemed to deepen about him; and he felt no fear. Though his bride had come to him out of Yomi,—out of the place of the Yellow Springs of death,—his heart had been wholly won. Who weds a ghost must become a ghost;—yet he knew himself ready to die, not once, but many times, rather than betray by word or look one thought that might bring a shadow of pain to the brow of the beautiful illusion before him.
Of the affection proffered he had no misgiving: the truth had been told him when any unloving purpose might better have been served by deception. His horse, you know, was killed by an arrow, and fell upon him; and when he called for help, those who had lived upon his bounty deserted him in his need. Then he was taken prisoner, and sent to Kamakura, where they treated him shamefully, and at last put him to death. She was only five years old. I had been her milk-nurse, and I did what I could for her. Year after year we wandered from place to place, traveling in pilgrim-garb But these tales of grief are ill-timed," exclaimed the nurse, wiping away her tears;—"pardon the foolish heart of an old woman who cannot forget the past.
However, she has obtained the husband [pg ] whom she desired; that is the greatest happiness But the hour is late. The bridal-chamber has been prepared; and I must now leave you to care for each other until morning. She rose, and sliding back the screens parting the guest-room from the adjoining chamber, ushered them to their sleeping apartment. For everything appeared so real that he had almost ceased to think of the illusion woven around him. And because of seeing you, the world became changed to me from that hour and [pg ] moment.
But you do not remember, because our meeting was not in this, your present life: it was very, very long ago. Since that time you have passed through many deaths and births, and have had many comely bodies. But I have remained always that which you see me now: I could not obtain another body, nor enter into another state of existence, because of my great wish for you. My dear lord and husband, I have waited for you through many ages of men. And the bridegroom felt nowise afraid at hearing these strange words, but desired nothing more in life, or in all his lives to come, than to feel her arms about him, and to hear the caress of her voice.
But the pealing of a temple-bell proclaimed the coming of dawn. Birds began to twitter; a morning breeze set all the trees a-whispering. Suddenly the old nurse pushed apart the sliding screens of the bridal-chamber, and exclaimed:—. By daylight you must not be together, even for [pg ] an instant: that were fatal! You must bid each other good-by. He vaguely understood the warning uttered, and resigned himself wholly to destiny.
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His will belonged to him no more; he desired only to please his shadowy bride. She placed in his hands a little suzuri , or ink-stone, curiously carved, and said:—. It is of strange fashion because it is old, having been augustly bestowed upon my father by the favor of the Emperor Takakura. For that reason only, I thought it to be a precious thing. Then the little miya-dzukai came to guide him through the garden, and his bride with her foster-mother accompanied him to the threshold.
As he turned at the foot of the steps to make his parting salute, the old woman said:—. This being the Year of the Tiger, you will have to wait ten years. We shall send a kago 76 for you on the appointed day. In his bosom he carried the gift of his bride. The charm of her voice lingered in his ears,—and nevertheless, had it not been for the memento which he touched with questioning fingers, he could have persuaded himself that the memories of the night were memories of sleep, and that his life still belonged to him.
But the certainty that he had doomed himself evoked no least regret: he was troubled only by the pain of separation, and the thought of the seasons that would have to pass before the illusion could be renewed for him. Ten years! The mystery of the delay he could not hope to solve; the secret ways of the dead are known to the gods alone. But never again, by night or by day, was he able to find the rustic gate in the shadowed lane; never again could he perceive the figure [pg ] of the little miya-dzukai , walking alone in the sunset-glow. The village people, whom he questioned carefully, thought him bewitched.
No person of rank, they said, had ever dwelt in the settlement; and there had never been, in the neighborhood, any such garden as he described. But there had once been a great Buddhist temple near the place of which he spoke; and some gravestones of the temple-cemetery were still to be seen. They were of an ancient Chinese form, and were covered with moss and lichens.
The characters that had been cut upon them could no longer be deciphered. But friends and kindred soon perceived a great change in his appearance and manner. Day by day he seemed to become more pale and thin, though physicians declared that he had no bodily ailment; he looked like a ghost, and moved like a shadow. Thoughtful and solitary he had always been, but now he appeared indifferent [pg ] to everything which had formerly given him pleasure,—even to those literary studies by means of which he might have hoped to win distinction. To his mother—who thought that marriage might quicken his former ambition, and revive his interest in life—he said that he had made a vow to marry no living woman.
And the months dragged by. At last came the Year of the Boar, and the season of autumn; but I to could no longer take the solitary walks that he loved. He could not even rise from his bed. His life was ebbing, though none could divine the cause; and he slept so deeply and so long that his sleep was often mistaken for death. Out of such a sleep he was startled, one bright evening, by the voice of a child; and he saw at his bedside the little miya-dsukai who had guided him, ten years before, to the gate of the vanished garden.
To her he then for the first time related the story of his bridal, and he showed her the ink-stone which had been given him. He asked that it should be placed in his coffin,—and then he died. The ink-stone was buried with him. It was a perfect West Indian day. My friend the notary and I were crossing the island by a wonderful road which wound up through tropic forest to the clouds, and thence looped down again, through gold-green slopes of cane, and scenery amazing of violet and blue and ghost-gray peaks, to the roaring coast of the trade winds.
All the morning we had been ascending,—walking after our carriage, most of the time, for the sake of the brave little mule;—and the sea had been climbing behind us till it looked like a monstrous wall of blue, pansy-blue, under the ever heightening horizon. The heat was like the heat of a vapor-bath, but the air was good to breathe with its tropical odor,—an odor made up of smells of strange [pg ] saps, queer spicy scents of mould, exhalations of aromatic decay. Moreover, the views were glimpses of Paradise; and it was a joy to watch the torrents roaring down their gorges under shadows of tree-fern and bamboo.
My friend stopped the carriage before a gateway set into a hedge full of flowers that looked like pink-and-white butterflies. Within, at the end of a shady garden, I could see the porch of a planter's house; beyond were rows of cocoa palms, and glimpses of yellowing cane. Presently a negro, wearing only a pair of canvas trousers and a great straw hat, came hobbling to open the gate,—followed by a multitude, an astonishing multitude, of chippering chickens.
Under the shadow of that huge straw hat I could not see the negro's face; but I noticed that his limbs and body were strangely shrunken,—looked as if withered to the bone. A weirder creature I had never beheld; and I wondered at his following of chickens. I want to see Madame Floran. He got cured, or at least half-cured, in some extraordinary way; but ever since then he has been a skeleton. See how he limps! The skeleton passed out of sight behind the house, and we waited a while at the front porch.
My friend prepared the [pg ] refreshments; and then our hostess came to greet us, and to sit with us,—a nice old lady with hair like newly minted silver. I had never seen a smile sweeter than that with which she bade us welcome; and I wondered whether she could ever have been more charming in her Creole girlhood than she now appeared,—with her kindly wrinkles, and argent hair, and frank, black, sparkling eyes In the conversation that followed I was not able to take part, as it related only to some question of title.
The notary soon arranged whatever there was to arrange; and, after some charmingly spoken words of farewell from the gentle lady, we took our departure. Again the mummified negro hobbled before us, to open the gate,—followed by all his callow rabble of chickens. As we resumed our places in the carriage we could still hear the chippering of the creatures, pursuing after that ancient scarecrow.
The tone in which my friend uttered this epithet— le miserable! I suspected that a story was coming, and I waited for it in silence. The estate belonged to M. Floran,—the husband of the lady whom we visited; and she was a cousin, and the marriage was a love-match. They had been married about two years when the revolt occurred fortunately there were no children ,—the black revolt of eighteen hundred and forty-eight.
Several planters were murdered; and M. Floran was one of the first to be killed. And the old negro whom we saw to-day—the old sorcerer, as you call him—left the [pg ] plantation, and joined the rising: do you understand? But it was he that killed M. Floran,—for no reason whatever,—cut him up with a cutlass. Floran was riding home when the attack was made,—about a mile below the plantation Sober, that negro would not have dared to face M.
Floran: the scoundrel was drunk, of course,—raving drunk. Most of the blacks had been drinking tafia, with dead wasps in it, to give themselves courage. When the military got control of the mob, search was made everywhere for the murderer of M. Floran; but he could not be found. He was lying out in the cane,—in M. Floran's cane!
I killed him! When he was asked why he killed M. Well, Madame forgave him! She only said, 'May God pardon me as I now pardon you! Then she sent him back to work; and he has been working for her ever since. Of course he is now too old to be of any use in the field;—he only takes care of the chickens. There was a consultation; and the relatives decided so to arrange matters that Madame could have her own way. She imagined that it was her duty as a Christian, not only to forgive him, but to take care of him.
We thought that she was mistaken,—but we could understand Well, there is an example of what religion can do. The surprise of a new fact, or the sudden perception of something never before imagined, may cause an involuntary smile. Unconsciously I smiled, while my friend was yet speaking; and the good notary's brow darkened. That is wrong!
But you do not believe: you do not know what it is,—the true religion,—the real Christianity!
I do believe every word of what you have told me. If I laughed unthinkingly, it was only because I could not help wondering" She was the only person in the world who could have saved him. He only felt it! Find me an instinct like that, and I will show you a brain incapable of any knowledge, any thinking, any understanding: not the mind of a man, but the brain of a beast!
This contest, between the mightiest of Western powers and a people that began to study Western science only within the recollection of many persons still in vigorous life, is, on one side at least, a struggle for national existence. It was inevitable, [pg ] this struggle,—might perhaps have been delayed, but certainly not averted. For all industrial civilization the contest is one of vast moment;—for Japan it is probably the supreme crisis in her national life. As to what her fleets and her armies have been doing, the world is fully informed; but as to what her people are doing at home, little has been written.
To inexperienced observation they would appear to be doing nothing unusual; and this strange calm is worthy of record. At the beginning of hostilities an Imperial mandate was issued, bidding all non-combatants to pursue their avocations as usual, and to trouble themselves as little as possible about exterior events;—and this command has been obeyed to the letter. It would be natural to suppose that all the sacrifices, tragedies, and uncertainties of the contest had thrown their gloom over the life of [pg ] the capital in especial; but there is really nothing whatever to indicate a condition of anxiety or depression.
On the contrary, one is astonished by the joyous tone of public confidence, and the admirably restrained pride of the nation in its victories. Western tides have strewn the coast with Japanese corpses; regiments have been blown out of existence in the storming of positions defended by wire-entanglements; battleships have been lost: yet at no moment has there been the least public excitement. The people are following their daily occupations just as they did before the war; the cheery aspect of things is just the same; the theatres and flower displays are not less well patronized.
Except after the news of some great victory,—celebrated with fireworks and lantern processions,—there are no signs of public emotion; and but for the frequent distribution of newspaper extras, by runners ringing bells, you [pg ] could almost persuade yourself that the whole story of the war is an evil dream.
Yet there has been, of necessity, a vast amount of suffering—viewless and voiceless suffering—repressed by that sense of social and patriotic duty which is Japanese religion. As a seventeen-syllable poem of the hour tells us, the news of every victory must bring pain as well as joy:—. The great quiet and the smiling tearlessness testify to the more than Spartan discipline of the race. Anciently the people were trained, not only to conceal their emotions, but to speak in a cheerful voice and to show a pleasant face under any stress of moral suffering; and they are obedient to that teaching to-day.
It would still be thought a shame to betray personal [pg ] sorrow for the loss of those who die for Emperor and fatherland. The public seem to view the events of the war as they would watch the scenes of a popular play. They are interested without being excited; and their extraordinary self-control is particularly shown in various manifestations of the "Play-impulse. But the present psychological condition, the cheerful and even playful tone of public feeling, can be indicated less by any general statement than by the mention of ordinary facts,—every-day matters recorded in the writer's diary.
Never before were the photographers so busy; it is said that they have not been able [pg ] to fulfill half of the demands made upon them. The hundreds of thousands of men sent to the war wished to leave photographs with their families, and also to take with them portraits of parents, children, and other beloved persons. The nation was being photographed during the past six months.
A fact of sociological interest is that photography has added something new to the poetry of the domestic faith. From the time of its first introduction, photography became popular in Japan; and none of those superstitions, which inspire fear of the camera among less civilized races, offered any obstacle to the rapid development of a new industry.
It is true that there exists some queer-folk beliefs about photographs,—ideas of mysterious relation between the sun-picture and the person imaged. For example: if, in the photograph of a group, one figure appear indistinct or blurred, that is thought to be an omen of sickness or death.
But this superstition has its industrial value: it has compelled photographers to be careful about their work,—especially in these days of war, [pg ] when everybody wants to have a good clear portrait, because the portrait might be needed for another purpose than preservation in an album. During the last twenty years there has gradually come into existence the custom of placing the photograph of a dead parent, brother, husband, or child, beside the mortuary tablet kept in the Buddhist household shrine. For this reason, also, the departing soldier wishes to leave at home a good likeness of himself.
The rites of domestic affection, in old samurai families, are not confined to the cult of the dead. On certain occasions, the picture of the absent parent, husband, brother, or betrothed, is placed in the alcove of the guest-room, and a feast laid out before it. The photograph, in such cases, is fixed upon a little stand dai ; and the feast is served as if the person were present. This pretty custom of preparing a meal for the absent is probably more ancient than any art of portraiture; but the modern photograph adds to the human poetry of the rite.
In feudal time it was the [pg ] rule to set the repast facing the direction in which the absent person had gone—north, south, east, or west. After a brief interval the covers of the vessels containing the cooked food were lifted and examined. If the lacquered inner surface was thickly beaded with vapor, all was well; but if the surface was dry, that was an omen of death, a sign that the disembodied spirit had returned to absorb the essence of the offerings. As might have been expected, in a country where the "play-impulse" is stronger, perhaps, than in any other part of the world, the Zeitgeist found manifestation in the flower displays of the year.
I visited those in my neighborhood, which is the Quarter of the Gardeners. This quarter is famous for its azaleas tsutsuji ; and every spring the azalea gardens attract thousands of visitors,—not only by the wonderful exhibition then made of shrubs which look like solid masses of blossom ranging up from snowy white, through all shades of pink, to a flamboyant purple but also by displays [pg ] of effigies: groups of figures ingeniously formed with living leaves and flowers. These figures, life-size, usually represent famous incidents of history or drama.
In many cases—though not in all—the bodies and the costumes are composed of foliage and flowers trained to grow about a framework; while the faces, feet, and hands are represented by some kind of flesh-colored composition. This year, however, a majority of the displays represented scenes of the war,—such as an engagement between Japanese infantry and mounted Cossacks, a night attack by torpedo boats, the sinking of a battleship. In the last-mentioned display, Russian bluejackets appeared, swimming for their lives in a rough sea;—the pasteboard waves and the swimming figures being made to rise and fall by the pulling of a string; while the crackling of quick-firing guns was imitated by a mechanism contrived with sheets of zinc.
Almost immediately after the beginning of hostilities, thousands of "war pictures"—mostly cheap lithographs—were published. The drawing and coloring were better than those of the prints issued at the time of the war with China; but the details were to a great extent imaginary,—altogether imaginary as to the appearance of Russian troops.
Pictures of the engagements with the Russian fleet were effective, despite some lurid exaggeration. The most startling things were pictures of Russian defeats in Korea, published before a single military engagement had taken place;—the artist had "flushed to anticipate the scene.
The propriety and the wisdom of thus pictorially [pg ] predicting victory, and easy victory to boot, may be questioned. But I am told that the custom of so doing is an old one; and it is thought that to realize the common hope thus imaginatively is lucky. At all events, there is no attempt at deception in these pictorial undertakings;—they help to keep up the public courage, and they ought to be pleasing to the gods.
Some of the earlier pictures have now been realized in grim fact. The victories in China had been similarly foreshadowed: they amply justified the faith of the artist To-day the war pictures continue to multiply; but they have changed character.
The inexorable truth of the photograph, and the sketches of the war correspondent, now bring all the vividness and violence of fact to help the artist's imagination. At this writing, Japan has yet lost no single battle; but not a few of her victories have been dearly won.
To enumerate even a tenth of the various articles ornamented with designs inspired by the war—articles such as combs, clasps, fans, brooches, card-cases, purses—would require a volume. Even cakes and confectionery are stamped with naval or military designs; and the glass or paper windows of shops—not to mention the signboards—have pictures of Japanese victories painted upon them. At night the shop lanterns proclaim the pride of the nation in its fleets and armies; and a whole chapter might easily be written about the new designs in transparencies and toy lanterns.
A new revolving lantern—turned by the air-current which its own flame creates—has become very popular. It represents a charge of Japanese infantry upon Russian defenses; and holes pierced in the colored paper, so as to produce a continuous vivid flashing while the transparency revolves, suggest the exploding of shells and the volleying of machine guns. Some displays of the art-impulse, as inspired by the war, have been made in directions entirely unfamiliar to Western experience,—in [pg ] the manufacture, for example, of women's hair ornaments and dress materials.
More remarkable than these are the new hairpins;—by hairpins I mean those long double-pronged ornaments of flexible metal which are called kanzashi , and are more or less ornamented according to the age of the wearer. The kanzashi made for young girls are highly decorative; those worn by older folk are plain, or adorned only with a ball of coral or polished stone.
The new hairpins might be called commemorative: one, of which the decoration represents a British and a Japanese flag intercrossed, celebrates the Anglo-Japanese alliance; another represents an officer's cap and sword; and the best of all is surmounted by a tiny metal model of a battleship. The battleship-pin is not merely fantastic: it is actually pretty! As might have been expected, military and naval subjects occupy a large place among the year's designs for toweling. The [pg ] towel designs celebrating naval victories have been particularly successful: they are mostly in white, on a blue ground; or in black, on a white ground.
One of the best—blue and white—represented only a flock of gulls wheeling about the masthead of a sunken iron-clad, and, far away, the silhouettes of Japanese battleships passing to the horizon What especially struck me in this, and in several other designs, was the original manner in which the Japanese artist had seized upon the traits of the modern battleship,—the powerful and sinister lines of its shape,—just as he would have caught for us the typical character of a beetle or a lobster.
The lines have been just enough exaggerated to convey, at one glance, the real impression made by the aspect of these iron monsters,—vague impression of bulk and force and menace, very difficult to express by ordinary methods of drawing. Besides towels decorated with artistic sketches of this sort, there have been placed upon the market many kinds of towels bearing comic war pictures,—caricatures or cartoons [pg ] which are amusing without being malignant.
It will be remembered that at the time of the first attack made upon the Port Arthur squadron, several of the Russian officers were in the Dalny theatre,—never dreaming that the Japanese would dare to strike the first blow. This incident has been made the subject of a towel design. At one end of the towel is a comic study of the faces of the Russians, delightedly watching the gyrations of a ballet dancer. At the other end is a study of the faces of the same commanders when they find, on returning to the port, only the masts of their battleships above water. Another towel shows a procession of fish in front of a surgeon's office—waiting their turns to be relieved of sundry bayonets, swords, revolvers, and rifles, which have stuck in their throats.
A third towel picture represents a Russian diver examining, with a prodigious magnifying-glass, the holes made by torpedoes in the hull of a sunken cruiser. Comic verses or legends, in cursive text, are printed beside these pictures. The great house of Mitsui, which [pg ] placed the best of these designs on the market, also produced some beautiful souvenirs of the war, in the shape of fukusa.
A fukusa is an ornamental silk covering, or wrapper, put over presents sent to friends on certain occasions, and returned after the present has been received. These are made of the heaviest and costliest silk, and inclosed within appropriately decorated covers. Upon one fukusa is a colored picture of the cruisers Nisshin and Kasuga, under full steam; and upon another has been printed, in beautiful Chinese characters, the full text of the Imperial Declaration of war.