Smell the pigments, hear the voices
News nishikie were produced and circulated 130 years ago. The passage of time does not prevent us from immediately appreciating their obviously human expression. Whether holding one in your hands, or looking at an image in a book or on a monitor, you can smell the pigments, and hear the shouts, screams, laughter, sighs, and weeping of the people in the picture.
The stories tell themselves through images and text. Commentary, when necessary, is about the art and language that set news nishikie apart from newspapers, and on the social and political backgrounds of the stories.
The articles on this page are about news nishikie as news media and artistic expression. Articles about specific themes are posted under Crime, Suicide, Society, and Politics. See Media for information on selected news nishikie and news papers, and Who's who for information on some of the people involved with the news nishikie and newspapers. See Bibliography and Web sources for publications and websites that are particularly relevant to the history and appreciation of news nishikie.
All articles will display in this window. Some articles have images that may take time to load. Some articles have links to related information on this or another website. Except where otherwise noted, clicking on a link will display the information in this window.
Click "Back" on your browser's toolbar to return to previous content. (WW)
Articles on the two newspapers related to the birth, growth, and demise of the main Tokyo news nishikie series are featured here -- namely Tokyo nichinichi shinbun and Yubin hochi shinbun. I am calling the papers "Tonichi" and "Hochi" and the nishikie series that bear their names "TNS" and YHS".
Koko shinbun is of interest as an early illustrated paper produced by the people who founded Tonichi. Some of the same people also figured in the later production of TNS.
This is a tutorial on news nishikie. Typical print details shows the layout of a representative news nishikie. News nishikie timelines graphically shows the emergence, development, and passing of TNS, YHS, and Osaka news nishikie along a timeline, against the background of changes in politics, regulation, society, and journalism.
TNS news nishikie
Included here are all articles that focus on the Tokyo nichinichi shinbun or TNS) news nishikie series. TNS news nishikie birth looks at the print which announced the beginning of the the Tonichi nishikie series. TNS two series, four stages examines changes in the designs of the cherubs, and other features that mark four stages in the life of the series. TNS cherubs and seals shows the relationship between Stage 1 and Stage 2 seals with two variations of a seal used to represent October 1874, which allows more accurate ordering of prints which have these features. Finally, TNS souvenirs to news shows that Tonichi nishikie began as souvenirs, and struggled to be news before dropping out of the news nishikie business.
YHS news nishikie
Included here are all articles that focus on the Yubin hochi shinbun or YHS news nishikie series. YHS news nishikie birth looks at the print which announced the beginning of the the Hochi nishikie series. YHS known prints updates lists of known Hochi news nishikie as reported by various writers, and as known to the compilers of this website. YHS two series, three stages describes the two series and three stages through which Hochi news nishikie passed during its life. YHS publishing details presents the same data on issue number and writers, and on seal month and lag time, that was shown for Tonichi news nishikie in the TNS souvenirs to news article.
Osaka news nishikie
Osaka news nishikie emerged under somewhat different circumstances than their Tokyo cousins. The only news papers in Osaka at the time were imported from Tokyo and elsewhere. Presumably even some TNS and YHS news nishikie made their way to Osaka, not only as souvenirs in the baggage of travelers bearing, but as printed matter intended for resale. Osaka series profiles looks at all series of Osaka prints that are classified as news nishikie. ONgS variations (1) examines Osaka nishikiga shinbun (Series 1), possibly the earliest of the Osaka series and certainly the most interesting in terms of the attention it attracted. ONeSw variations (23) reconstructs a single series by reuniting Osaka nishikie shinbun (Series 2) and Osaka nishikiga shinwa (Series 3), since "ga" and "shinwa" are merely variations of "e" and "shinbun" within the same group. YHSNg variations (11) looks at the varities of Yubin hochi shinbun nishikiga (Series 11). "Shinbun" suppression examines the practice of removing -- by deletion, doctoring, or brushing out -- part or all of the term "shinbun" from later editions of Osaka prints, and from some Tokyo prints.
Other story prints
All articles in this section are about other series of nishikie, and illustrated woodblock printed books, which feature stories.
Early Meiji laws
All articles listed here are located in, and linked to, the Law section of the Society feature on the Yosha Research website.
All articles in this section are about journalistic, artistic, and other aspects of news nishikie. Articles related to specific themes are grouped under Crime, Suicide, Society, and Politics on menu bar at top.
Woodblock publishing presents an overview of how woodblock prints were produced.