Edo: no date. Late Edo. (circa1855?). Stock ID #158137
Black and white woodblock advertisement for surveying and optical instruments from the shop of Ōsumi Gensuke 大隅源助. Two sheets neatly joined together measure 36 x 50cm. Very good copy. Ōsumi was a manufacture and retailer of surveying instruments, optical equipment, clocks, etc. His business ran from the late Edo to early Meiji period and his shop was in Asakusa, Edo. There were four generations of the shop owners named Gensuke during this period, and probably this flyer was issued by Ōsumi Gensuke II (1824-96) in the late Edo period.
The list of the goods the shop dealt in are listed in the text on the right. They are: spectacles, surveying instruments, goods imported from China, drawing materials, compasses and clocks, mirrors, glass and saltpetre, and telescopic instruments. The items illustrated here include a Japanese-style clock [Yaguradokei which literally means "tower clock" after its shape], spectacles, compasses, a thermometer, a magnifying glass, a music box, a magic lantern, a camera obscura, a pedometer, a pocket watch, a telescope, a microscope, different types of lamps, a mirror, a float-type hydrometer, a magnet, and a barometer/seismometer. Ōsumi issued more than ten flyers of this type during the late Edo to early Meiji period. These goods, all of which were high-tech instruments at the time, contributed to the modernisation of Japan. (When referring to this item please quote stockid 158137).