Azuma Bridge from the series "Edo Bridges"
Edo Period (1600-1868)
15 1/16 x 10 5/16 in. (38.2 x 26.2 cm)
Utagawa Kunisada I
(1786 - 1864)
Medium and Support:
Transfer from the Art Department of the University of Rochester
Location: Not currently on view
One in a series on the theme of bridges spanning the Sumida River that bisects Edo, this print shows the Azumabashi, or Azuma Bridge (-bashi means bridge), in the background. The Azuma Bridge was famous as the site where the fireworks displays over the river in summer were customarily viewed. Mt. Fuji appears in the distance behind the title cartouche on the left, and a roof of the popular Sensôji temple juts up just to the right at the far end of the bridge. The two most famous bridges of this appearance during the Edo period were Azumabashi in Edo and Sanjô Ôhashi in Kyoto. While the geisha playing the shamisen in the foreground is not specified, her name may well be Azuma ("East"), then as now a common word in the names of people such as entertainers and sumô wrestlers.