(circa1800). Stock ID #155968
Large coloured manuscript map of Ezo, modern day Hokkaido, showing the northeastern tip of Honshu in green, Manchuria as a large landmass along the lower border, and the island of Sakhalin. The Russian territory of Kamchatska is shown in orange. 51.5 x 92.5cm. Dark paper strip along edges. Chop at upper left corner. Folds into card covers measuring 13 x 23cm, card folder worn and insect damaged, title label in Japanese. Small holes at some folds, a little very minor insect damage, some offsetting of ink. A good copy. The controversial Japanese book and five accompanying maps, 'Sangoku tsüran zusetsu' published in 1785, describes the geography and customs of three countries - Kankoku (Korea), Yezo or Ezo (present day Hokkaido), and Ryükyü (present day Okinawa). At the time of its publication Ha Yezo was only partially occupied by the Tokugawa government and although from 1609 Ryükyü was in reality under the control of the Shimazu clan in Satsuma (present Kagoshima Prefecture), the Shimazu clan allowed it to be an independent country superficially. Among the five maps published to accompany Sangoku tsüran yochi (General Route Map of Three Countries), is this map of Japan and its neighbouring countries which this manuscript map is a copy of. The other four maps are: a map of Ryükyü (琉球島圖), the General Map of Three Countries (三國通覽全圖), the eight provinces of Korea (朝鮮八道圖), and Ogasawara Islands (無人島圖). In his notes on this map of Ezo or Hokkaido, Hayashi discusses the sea lanes indicated by dotted lines and notes "Since, in recent years, men of Orosha [Russians] have taken possession of the territory east of Tartary, this land is called Orosha, or Kamusasuka.... Also since the Russians all wear red coats, the residents of Ezo call it Red Ezo in their dialect." Following the publication of 'Sangoku tsüran zusetsu' the authorities ordered the banning of the publication and for the woodblocks used to print the book and maps to be destroyed. Hayashi Shihei was imprisoned as his work was regarded as an offence against Japan's seclusion policies at the time. He died the following year. (When referring to this item please quote stockid 155968).