Artist: Utagawa Kunisada (Japanese, 1786–1865)
Period: Edo period (1615–1868)
Date: ca. 1824
Medium: Polychrome woodblock print (surimono); ink and color on paper
Dimensions: 8 7/16 x 7 3/8 in. (21.4 x 18.7 cm)
Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1921
Accession Number: JP1251
Benkei is an armed and courageous warrior. Seated on a pile of humans, this character presents overlapping images of the superpowerful heroes Benkei and Fudō Myōō (Immovable Guardian King of the Buddhist Law), holding a sword and a rosary.
Fudō Myōō, particularly at the Shinshōji temple in Narita, is a protector of the Ichikawa family. This surimono, a privately commissioned print, might have been a New Year's gift to celebrate the birth of the future Danjūrō VIII.