Foreign quarter

Discovered: Old Yokohama in ukiyoe, courtesy of the Kanagawa Prefectural Library. Includes lots of pictures of foreigners, and not just US/UK types -- there're people from Russia (魯西亞), Mongolia (蒙古), France (佛蘭西), Nanking (南京), and more.

(Actually, I should confess that I don't know if that Mongol guy was really from Mongolia or just from China or Russia or something, but here are some more picture scrolls of his people invading Japan a few centuries earlier, anyway.)

In conclusion, I also want to give it up for this sweet picture of a train.

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This blog rules. Now I don't have to spend hours scouring the juicy NDL and Aozora (on your other blog) archives because you're doing it for me!


Oh wow. Thanks for blogging that find. I love to see how a culture depicts outsiders. It can be so bizzare, like the illustrations of the Maya looking like greeks in classical illustration.


Ha ha, wow, look at the careful rendering of the western utensils. I seem to recall that knives and spoons really were weirdly curved like that at one point; ease of use, I think.


I like the dainty, cautious way that woman is holding the trumpet (?) in the "Russia" link.

Ali: Yeah, it's especially weird to see pictures of French (etc.) ladies looking basically the same as Japanese courtesans, including eye shape, bone structure, except dressed differently. Makes you wonder if the artist was just lazy or not that skilled, or if their style was so idealized that even a European person came out looking the same way.


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